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Published On: Tue, Dec 30th, 2014

Missing AirAsia plane: Bodies, debris recovered from sea

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AIRASIA FOUNDRescuers pulled bodies and debris from the Java Sea on Tuesday as Indonesia officials said they were “95 percent sure” they had found the AirAsia passenger jet that disappeared with 162 people aboard.

The Indonesian National Search and Rescue Agency told NBC News that teams searching for the airliner had located at least six corpses, three of which were recovered. An airplane emergency exit door and red, white and black debris — the colors of the AirAsia jet — were identified from the air, the agency added. Images broadcast on Indonesian television showed bodies and objects floating in the sea.

AirAsia Indonesia said it was informed by Indonesia’s Search and Rescue Agency that debris found in the Karimata Strait was “indeed from QZ8501.”

“At the present time, search and rescue operations are still in progress and further investigation of the debris found at the location is still underway,” the airline said in a statement “We would like to extend our sincere sympathies to the family and friends of those on board QZ8501. Our sympathies also go out to the families of our dear colleagues,” Sunu Widyatmoko, Chief Executive Officer of AirAsia Indonesia, said in the statement, expressing condolences and regrets.

Indonesia’s president and the head of AirAsia were traveling to Surabaya — Indonesia’s second-largest city and where the flight originated — to be with grieving relatives who’d gathered there waiting for news. Any bodies recovered would be taken to an Indonesian warship and then transported to an airport in Surabaya, according to the Search and Rescue Agency.


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