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Malaysia Airlines scraps flight codes of missing plane

Thursday, 13 March 2014 - 2:12pm IST | Place: Kuala Lumpur | Agency: IANS

Malaysia Airlines announced Thursday morning that the flight codes of its missing plane, MH370 and MH371, will be dropped and replaced by new ones.

"As a mark of respect to the passengers and crew of MH370 March 8, 2014, the MH370 and MH371 flight codes will be retired from the Malaysia Airlines' Kuala Lumpur-Beijing-Kuala Lumpur route," the airline said in a website update.

With effect from March 14, new numbers will replace MH370 and MH371 -- MH318 for Kuala Lumpur-Beijing and MH319 for Beijing-Kuala Lumpur - flights it said.

The carrier said there would be no changes to the frequency of its services and it would continue to operate double daily services to Beijing.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 with 239 passengers and crew on board mysteriously vanished without a trace about an hour after taking off from Kuala Lumpur early Saturday. The Boeing 777-200ER was presumed to have crashed off the Vietnamese coast in the South China Sea.

The plane took off from Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 a.m. Saturday and was due to land in Beijing at 6.30 a.m. the same day. The 227 passengers on the flight included five Indians, 154 Chinese and 38 Malaysians.

Contact with the plane was lost along with its radar signal at 1.40 a.m. Saturday when it was flying over the Ho Chi Minh City air traffic control area in Vietnam.

The aircraft remains missing for the sixth day Thursday.

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