Missing Malaysia plane: 25 countries help search

KUALA LUMPUR - Some 25 countries are now involved in a vast search operation for the missing airliner that disappeared over a week ago, Malaysian officials say.

The search area - from central Asia to the southern Indian Ocean - takes in vast tracts of land and sea.

An already complex search operation has become even more difficult, Malaysia's transport minister says.

Crew, passengers and ground staff are being investigated after it was confirmed the jet was commandeered.

Investigators are trying to obtain more radar and satellite data from any of the countries that Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 may have passed over, with its 239 crew and passengers.

The leaders of several Asian countries have been briefed by the Malaysia government in what Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein has described as a new phase of the search.

"The information revealed yesterday [Saturday] covers a huge ground and it is our hope and that with that new information parties that can be of assistance to us can come forward and help us narrow the search to an area that is much more feasible, and that is what we have been doing since last night," he said at a news conference.

Malaysian officials are contacting countries including Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, China, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Australia and France.