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Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Six Bodies Found In AirAsia Search

At least six bodies have been found and at least three recovered in the search for missing AirAsia Flight QZ8501, Indonesian officials and media say.



The bodies were spotted along with debris floating in the Java Sea off the Indonesian part of Borneo, in one of the search zones for the plane.

One official said the debris was 95% likely to be from the missing aircraft.

The Airbus A320-200, carrying 162 people from Surabaya in Indonesia to Singapore, disappeared on Sunday.

The search operation is now in its third day, with the area widened to cover 13 zones over land and sea.

During a news conference by the head of the operation, shown live on Indonesian TV, pictures of the debris were shown including a body floating on the water.

Relatives of passengers on the plane watching the pictures were visibly shocked.

Later, reports from officials and media in Pangkalan Bun, a nearby town in Central Kalimantan province, said six bodies had been found and at least three recovered.

AFP news agency later quoted the navy as saying that as many as 40 had been retrieved by one warship, saying the rescuers were "very busy now".

AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes tweeted to the families: "My heart is filled with sadness for all the families involved in QZ 8501. On behalf of AirAsia my condolences."

Search operation head Bambang Soelistyo said he was 95% certain the objects shown were from the plane, adding that a shadow was spotted under water which appeared to be in the shape of a plane.

All resources were now being sent to the area where the debris was found, and all objects or bodies found would be taken to Pangkalan Bun, he said.

Mr Soelistyo added that ships with more sophisticated technology were being deployed to check whether larger parts of the plane were submerged beneath the debris.

Indonesian civil aviation chief Djoko Murjatmodjo, quoted by AFP news agency, said "significant things" such as a passenger door and cargo door had been found.

He added that the objects had been found 160km (100 miles) south-west of Pangkalan Bun.

At least 30 ships, 15 aircraft and seven helicopters joined the operation when it resumed at 06:00 local time on Tuesday (23:00 GMT Monday). Sky news

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