Stolen European passports on missing plane

2014-03-08 18:02

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Milan - Foreign ministry officials in Rome and Vienna confirm that names of two nationals listed on the manifest of the missing Malaysian airlines flight match passports reported stolen in Thailand.

Italy's Foreign Ministry said on Saturday that an Italian man whose name was listed as being aboard is travelling in Thailand and was not aboard the plane.

A foreign ministry functionary, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed Italian reports that Luigi Maraldi had reported his passport stolen last August.

Italian news agency Ansa says Maraldi called home after hearing reports that an Italian with his name was aboard the plane.

Austrian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Martin Weiss confirmed that a name listed on the manifest matches an Austrian passport reported stolen two years ago in Thailand. Weiss would not confirm the identity.

Meanwhile, the US State Department confirms that three Americans were aboard the Malaysia Airlines jet.

Spokesperson Jen Psaki said in a statement that officials from the US Embassies in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and Beijing are in contact with families of the passengers. The department says it's working to determine if other US citizens may have been on the flight.

No additional information was released.

The aircraft went missing early on Saturday on a flight from Malaysia to Beijing. Vietnamese air force planes report spotting a pair of large oil slicks in the area where the Boeing 777 disappeared.

Psaki extended condolences to the loved ones of passengers on Flight MH370.
- AP
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