Three more bodies of passengers on AirAsia flight QZ8501 were found on January 8, bringing the total recovered to 44 out of the 162 people on board.

Special equipment such as lifting balloons is deployed to lift the plane’s tail the black box is attached off the sea bed on January 9, according to Chief of the Indonesian Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) Henry Bambang Soelistyo.

He stressed the priority to recover bodies.

The tail was found on January 7, upturned on the sea bed at a depth of around 34 metres.

The aircraft crashed into the Java Sea on December 28, 2014 while en route from Indonesia's Surabaya to Singapore with 162 passengers and crew members on board, including 155 Indonesians, three Koreans, one Singaporean, one Malaysian, one French and one British.-VNA