Coun­tries to ‘re­fine’ MH370 search ef­forts

The China Post - - ASIA -

Malaysia, China and Aus­tralia will meet in Septem­ber to “re­fine” the search for Malaysia Air­lines flight MH370 af­ter part of the plane’s wing was dis­cov­ered on an In­dian Ocean is­land last month, more than a year on from its tragic dis­ap­pear­ance.

On Aug. 5, Malaysia’s prime min­is­ter Na­jib Razak said ex­perts had “con­clu­sively con­firmed” that the de­bris found on the French is­land of Re­union -- a piece of the wing known as the “flap­eron” -- came from the doomed flight, which van­ished 17 months ago in one of avi­a­tion’s great­est mys­ter­ies.

How­ever, French

in­ves­ti­ga­tors were more cau­tious, say­ing only there was a “very high prob­a­bil­ity” that the flap­eron came from the plane, spark­ing anger from rel­a­tives over the am­bi­gu­ity.

“With the dis­cov­ery of the flap­eron, we have to sit down with Aus­tralia and China to map the way for­ward to find the plane,” Malaysia’s deputy trans­port min­is­ter Ab­dul Aziz Kaprawi told AFP.

“We hope to re­fine and pri­or­i­tize the search ef­forts. Def­i­nitely, the search will con­tinue in the same area,” he said, adding that of­fi­cials were work­ing out the date for the gath­er­ing and the host for the meet­ing.

The jet dis­ap­peared from radar on March 8 last year af­ter mys­te­ri­ously veer­ing off its orig­i­nal flight path from Kuala Lumpur to Bei­jing.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors be­lieve the air­craft ran out of fuel and crashed some­where in the south­ern In­dian Ocean.

Of the 239 peo­ple on board, the ma­jor­ity were Malaysians and Chi­nese. Aus­tralia has been lead­ing the search for the plane, the largest multi­na­tional search op­er­a­tion in history.

More than 60,000 square kilo­me­ters of the seafloor have been searched so far, with no trace of the miss­ing Boe­ing 777 found un­til last month’s dis­cov­ery.

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