Hanoi: A Malaysia Airlines flight carrying 239 people from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing has been crashed into Tho Chu Island near Vietnam, the government said.
Malaysia Airlines flight 370 is has crashed 153 miles off of Vietnam’s Tho Chu island- the Vietnamese Navy confirms. The flight, operating Kuala Lumpur (airport code: KUL) to Beijing (airport code: PEK), disappeared and “lost contact” with the airline according to AFP. Malaysia is currently working with Search and Rescue officials to locate. The plane lost contact approximately two hours in to the usually six-hour flight.
We are deeply saddened by this incident and await the results of the accident investigation. The plane believed to be involved is 9M-MRO, a Boeing 777-200ER delivered in May of 2002.
“The plane lost contact in Ca Mau province airspace before it had entered contact with Ho Chi Minh City air traffic control,” a statement posted on the official Vietnamese government website said.
According to sources, the Boeing 777-200 departed Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 12:41 a.m. and was expected to land in Beijing at 6:30 a.m., a 2,300-mile (3,700 kilometer) trip. It was carrying 227 passengers, two of them infants, and 12 crew members, the airline said.
The passengers are of 13 nationalities, the airline said. They were from China and Taiwan (154), Malaysia (38), Indonesia (12), Australia (7), France (3), United States (4), New Zealand (2), Ukraine (2), Canada (2), Russia (1), Italy (1), Netherlands (1), Austria (1).
The plane was meant to transfer to Ho Chi Minh City air traffic control at 1722 GMT but never appeared, the statement said, citing a senior Ministry of Defence official.
Vietnam’s Ministry of Defence has launched rescue efforts to find the plane, working in coordination with Malaysian and Chinese officials, the statement added.