KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — The missing Malaysian jetliner was deliberately diverted and continued flying for more than six hours after losing contact with the ground, meaning it could have gone as far northwest as Kazakhstan or into the Indian Ocean's southern reaches, Malaysia's leader said Saturday. Prime Minister Najib Razak's statement confirmed days of mounting speculation that the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 to Beijing more than a week ago was not accidental. It refocused the investigation into the flight's crew and passengers and underlined the massive task for searchers who already have been scouring vast areas of ocean.
NEW DELHI (AP) — Indian navy ships supported by surveillance planes and helicopters scoured Andaman Sea islands for a third day on Saturday without any success in finding evidence of a missing Malaysia Airlines jet, an official said. V.S.R. Murthy, a top Indian coast guard official, said the search has been expanded farther west into the Bay of Bengal.
PHUKET, Thailand (AP) — When a German tourist refused to surrender his passport as collateral at a car rental stand along a popular beach in the Thai resort city of Phuket, the woman behind the counter pulled out a bag full of passport books to prove he could trust her. But the tourist, Falko Tillwich, was insistent. "I said absolutely not ... no way," he recalled, and later handed over his driver's license instead.
The disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 has generated dozens of theories on where it is now, from the Indian Ocean to the South China Sea, and how it vanished. Here's a rundown of what we know and what we don't, along with clues and theories about what happened to the Boeing 777 jetliner: THE WHERE:
SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Police and witnesses say thousands of mourners in the troubled Indian portion of Kashmir have defied a curfew and buried a Kashmiri teenage boy who was shot dead by government forces. The mourners took part in a funeral for 18-year-old Farhat Ahmed Dar on Saturday. They chanted slogans "Down with India!" and "We want freedom." The funeral took place in Naidkhai, a village nearly 30 kilometers (19 miles) north of Srinagar.
To steal Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 out of midair would require a pilot who knew how to elude detection by both civilian and military radar. It would take a runway at least a mile long to land the wide-body jet, possibly in the dark, and a hangar big enough to hide it. All without being seen. Improbable but not impossible, experts say.
As the search continues for the missing Malaysian Airlines flight, a key unanswered question is what happened to the Boeing 777's transponder. Transponders emit electronic signals containing information that shows up on air traffic controllers' screens. The information includes the plane's unique identifying code and its direction, speed and altitude.
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — One was passionate enough about flying to build his own flight simulator in his home. The other was a 27-year-old contemplating marriage after having just graduated to the cockpit of a Boeing 777. As speculation intensified Friday that the missing Malaysia Airlines plane might have been commandeered by someone with aviation skills, a picture began to emerge of the two pilots.
BEIJING (AP) — China on Friday urged Malaysia's government to release any information it has regarding the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner to help narrow the search area. The Foreign Ministry's appeal reflected growing frustration among Chinese officials over conflicting information about the plane, which vanished last Saturday with 239 people aboard, including 154 Chinese passengers.
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — In his final address to Afghanistan's parliament Saturday, President Hamid Karzai told the United States its soldiers can leave at the end of the year because his military, which already protects 93 percent of the country, was ready to take over entirely. He reiterated his stance that he would not sign a pact with the United States that would provide for a residual force of U.S. troops to remain behind after the final withdrawal, unless peace could first be established.
BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand said Saturday it suspected a group of 200 people recently rescued from a human trafficking camp were ethnic Uighur Muslims, as calls mounted from the international community to protect the group and ensure they are not forced back to China. Thai police discovered the group, which included 78 men, 60 women and 82 children, on Wednesday at a secluded jungle camp behind rubber plantations in southern Songkhla province.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States supports U.N. Security Council discussion of allegations North Korea committed crimes against humanity, a senior official said Friday. But he questioned whether the council had time to take up the issue. A U.N. commission of inquiry issued a report last month that detailed systematic executions, torture, rape and mass starvation by North Korea's authoritarian government. The commission, led by a retired Australian judge, called for the Security Council to consider the report and refer North Korea to the International Criminal Court.
PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — A Pakistani judicial official reduced on Saturday the 33-year jail sentence of a doctor alleged to have helped the U.S. track down Osama bin Laden to 23 years, one of his lawyers said. Shakil Afridi was convicted in May 2012 by a tribal court in the northwest. According to his lawyer, the charges were related to allegations that he gave money and provided medical treatment to Islamic militants.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawmakers pushed the Obama administration Friday to strengthen relations with Taiwan and voiced concern that U.S. defense budget cuts will affect planned upgrades to the self-governing island's fleet of F-16s. Both Republicans and Democrats on the House Foreign Affairs Committee accused the administration of prioritizing U.S. relations with China over those with Taiwan, particularly when it comes to defense sales.
NEW YORK (AP) — An Indian diplomat was re-indicted Friday on U.S. visa fraud charges that touched off an international stir after she was arrested and strip-searched last year. The new indictment, filed Friday, essentially just reinstates recently dismissed charges against the diplomat, Devyani Khobragade — charges that now arrive with her out of the United States.
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