Plane search widens to Andaman sea

The international search for a missing Malaysian airliner has been expanded into the Andaman Sea, hundreds of kilometres (miles) to the northwest of the original search radius, an official said Wednesday.

"Yes, above Sumatra is the Andaman Sea," Malaysian civil aviation chief Azharuddin Abdul Rahman told AFP when asked to confirm whether ships and planes were searching for missing flight MH370 there.

Sumatra is a large Indonesian island south of the Andaman Sea. The body of water is off Thailand's west coast.

Vietnam said Wednesday it had suspended its air search for MH370 as it waited for Malaysia to clarify the potential new direction of the multi-national hunt.

"We've decided to temporarily suspend some search and rescue activities, pending information from Malaysia," deputy minister of transport Pham Quy Tieu said, adding a sea search was still ongoing, but on a smaller scale.

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