AirAsia Flight QZ8501: Two bodies found in advanced stage of decay, says official

Recovery team from the the USS Sampson signalling the boat deck crew while conducting search and recovery operations in support of the Indonesian-led AirAsia flight QZ8501 search efforts in the Java Sea. An Indonesian official said on Wednesday that
Recovery team from the the USS Sampson signalling the boat deck crew while conducting search and recovery operations in support of the Indonesian-led AirAsia flight QZ8501 search efforts in the Java Sea. An Indonesian official said on Wednesday that two bodies retrieved by searchers from the Java sea were in an advanced stage of decay and was not recognisable. -- PHOTO: AFP

PANGKALAN BUN - An Indonesian official said two bodies retrieved by searchers from the Java sea were in an advanced stage of decay and was not recognisable, Antara news has reported.

"The bodies ...will be difficult to recognise physically," Senior Commissioner Hariyanto, the coordinator of the Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) Team of the Indonesian Police Headquarters, said on Wednesday.

Both bodies belonged to female victims, and their coffins will soon be flown to Surabaya for identification, he said.

Up to Wednesday morning, rescuers have retrieved 39 bodies, all of which are being flown to Surabaya for identification, after which they are being handed over to their families.

AirAsia flight QZ8501 went missing on Dec 28 en route from Surabaya, East Java, to Singapore.

It was carrying 162 people on board, including 155 Indonesians, three South Koreans, a Briton, a Singaporean, a French, and a Malaysian.

The ill-fated plane is believed to have crashed in the Java Sea, south of Pangkalan Bun, Central Kalimantan.

Rescuers have not discovered the aircraft fuselage so far.

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