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Updated Mar 12, 2014 - 2:10 pm

Report: Satellite photos may show missing Malaysian Air flight

PHOENIX -- A satellite may have found a missing Malaysian Air flight.

The photo first emerged on Twitter about 1:40 p.m. Arizona time on Wednesday. It purportedly shows the plane in the South China Sea.

According to CNN, the images were captured Sunday but were not released until Wednesday.

China's State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense announced the discovery, including images of what it said were "three suspected floating objects and their sizes."

The flight has been missing since Saturday, when it disappeared from radar after departing Kuala Lumpur for Beijing.

Authorities had earlier said the plane, which took off at 12:20 a.m. and was headed to Beijing, may have attempted to turn back to Kuala Lumpur, but they expressed surprise that it would do so without informing ground control.

The search for the plane was initially focused on waters between the eastern coast of Malaysia and Vietnam, the position where aviation authorities last tracked it. No trace of the plane, which was carrying 239 people, has been found by than 40 planes and ships from at least 10 nations searching the area.

Earlier Tuesday, Malaysia Airlines said in a statement that search and rescue teams had expanded their scope to the Malacca Strait. An earlier statement said the western coast of Malaysia was ``now the focus,'' but the airline subsequently said that phrase was an oversight. It didn't elaborate. Civil aviation chief Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the search remained ``on both sides'' of the country.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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