Myanmar cremates victims of plane disaster

As the search for the missing Myanmar plane continues into its third day, the tally of bodies recovered has risen to 31. The Chinese-made military transport plane lost contact 29 minutes after takeoff on Wednesday.

: Reuters
: Reuters

Family members of victims from the military plane crash mourn during a funeral ceremony in Dawei.

Myanmar on Friday cremated ten of the 31 bodies pulled from the waters off its southern coast as the hunt for a military transport plane that went missing over the Andaman Sea with 122 people aboard stretched into a third day.

Families prayed for their dead ones whose bodies were recovered in the search for the missing Myanmar plane on Friday before a cremation ceremony in Dawei.

"What we found now is my granddaughter. Her father and mother's bodies are not found yet," said one of the mourners, Ma Myat Thaw May, his voice trembling as he spoke of the 7-month-old girl.

Scores of soldiers waited on standby to help if more bodies needed to be carried ashore in the fishing village of Sanlan, about 600 km (372 miles) from Myanmar's largest city, Yangon.

Twenty-three adults and eight children made up the tally of bodies searchers have pulled from the Andaman Sea since Wednesday, the military said on its official Facebook page.

Eight navy ships and sonar systems had joined the search for victims of Wednesday's incident, along with 20 civilian boats in stormy weather off the southern coast, the military said.

Soldiers, family members and crew were on board the weekly flight from several coastal towns to Yangon when it went missing.

The Chinese-made Y-8-200F transport plane lost contact 29 minutes after takeoff, at a height of 18,000 feet (5,485 metres), about 43 miles (70 km) west of Dawei, the military said.

An aircraft wheel, two life jackets and some bags containing clothes – believed to be from the missing plane – were found on Thursday. Some oil patches were also spotted, the military said.

The cause of the incident has yet to be confirmed.