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AirAsia Flight QZ8501: Sea search for crash flight finds more bodies

After nearly a week of searching for the victims of AirAsia Flight 8501, rescue teams battling monsoon rains have more than tripled the number of bodies pulled from the Java Sea, some still strapped to their seats.

Of the 30 bodies recovered so far, 21 were found yesterday, many of them by a US Navy ship, according to officials.

The Airbus A320 carrying 162 passengers and crew went down on Sunday, halfway into a flight from Surabaya, Indonesia's second-largest city, to Singapore. Minutes before losing contact, the pilot told air traffic control he was approaching threatening clouds, but was denied permission to climb to a higher altitude because of heavy air traffic.

It remains unclear what caused the plane to plunge into the sea.

In addition to looking for victims, ships from Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and the US are scouring the ocean floor as they try to pinpoint wreckage and the all-important black boxes.

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