Navy joining search for Malaysian jetliner...Russian presence grows in Crimea...Marathon spelling bee ends



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WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Navy has dispatched a warship to aid in the search for a missing Malaysian jetliner. The guided missile destroyer USS Pinckney is on its way from international waters in the South China Sea to the southern coast of Vietnam to assist in the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. The Boeing 777 with 239 people aboard was flying to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, when it fell off radar screens. The Navy is also sending a patrol and surveillance plane based in Okinawa.

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia's prime minister says it's too early to say whether terrorism may have been involved in the disappearance of a Malaysia Airlines jet. He says officials are "looking at all possibilities." Foreign ministry officials in Italy and Austria say two people listed as passengers were not on the plane. They say both had previously reported their passports stolen in Thailand.

SEVASTOPOL, Ukraine (AP) — Russia has denied that its armed forces are active in Crimea, but dozens of military trucks have been seen carrying armed soldiers in the Ukrainian peninsula today. And a spokesman for the Ukrainian armed forces tells The Associated Press that witnesses reported seeing amphibious military ships unloading around 200 military vehicles in eastern Crimea last night.

EILAT, Israel (AP) — A captured ship that Israel says carried advanced rockets bound for Gaza militants has arrived in an Israeli port, accompanied by Israeli naval vessels and forces that seized it in the Red Sea. Israel says the ship was packed with dozens of Syrian-made M-302 rockets that would have put Israel's biggest cities well within reach of Gaza militants. Israel accuses Iran of orchestrating the delivery. Officials in Iran and Gaza have denied any involvement.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A marathon spelling bee finally has a winner — after nearly 100 rounds and two weeks of anticipation. The spelling bee in Jackson County, Missouri, ended today. A seventh-grader and fifth-grader were the last two standing last month after 19 rounds. It took them several hours and an additional 47 rounds to force today's deciding event. The seventh-grader, Kush Sharma, has now been declared the winner, with fifth-grader Sophia Hoffman taking second place.

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