News / Asia

Search Widens for Missing Malaysia Jet

  • Mike Barton, rescue coordination chief, right, shows Australia's Deputy Prime Minister, Warren Truss, the map of the Indian Ocean search areas during a tour of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority's rescue coordination center in Canberra, March 23, 2014.
  • Royal Australian Air Force pilot Capt. Russell Adams, left, speaks to the media after returning from a search mission in an AP-3C Orion at Pearce Base, Perth, Australia, March 23, 2014.
  • Ground crew members wave to a Japanese Maritime Defense Force P3C patrol plane as it leaves the Royal Malaysian Air Force base heading for Australia to join a search and rescue operation for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, Subang, Malaysia, March 23, 2014.
  • Royal Australian Air Force commander Craig Heap speaks to the media after Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force's P-3C Orion arrived to help with search operations for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, at Pearce Base in Perth, Australia, March 23, 2014.
  • Royal Australian Air Force Loadmasters prepare to launch a Self Locating Data Marker Buoy from a C-130J Hercules aircraft over the southern Indian Ocean, March 20, 2014. (AFP PHOTO / AUSTRALIAN DEFENSE/LEADING SEAMAN JUSTIN BROWN)
  • John Young, general manager of the emergency response division of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, answers a question as he stands in front of a diagram showing the search area for flight MH370 during a briefing in Canberra, March 20, 2014.
  • A Royal Australian Air Force pilot steers his AP-3C Orion over the southern Indian Ocean during the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in this picture released by the Australian Defense Force, March 20, 2014.
  • A Chinese family member of a passenger onboard missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 screams as she is being brought into a room outside the media conference area at a hotel near Kuala Lumpur International Airport, March 19, 2014.
  • An image in support of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is seen on the United Malays National Organisation building in Kuala Lumpur, March 19, 2014.
  • Students watch as a group of artists finish a piece based on the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 that was painted on a school ground in Makati city, metro Manila, Philippines, March 17, 2014.
Search for Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 370 Continues
VOA News
Malaysia said Monday the search for a missing passenger jet is underway along both the northern and southern corridors where it is believed to have been deliberately diverted.

Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein says 26 countries are involved in the search, including in water and on land in 11 countries.  The search spans tens of millions of square kilometers.

"Today I can confirm that the search-and-rescue operations in the northern and southern corridors have already begun," he said. "Countries including Malaysia, Australia, China, Indonesia, and Kazakhstan have already initiated search-and-rescue operations.  The (Malaysian) Royal Air Force  and the Royal National Navy have deployed assets to the southern corridor."

Investigators believe the Boeing 777 flew either north toward Central Asia or south, deeper into the vast Indian Ocean in the hours after it mysteriously vanished on March 8.

Australia on Monday agreed to take charge of the southern section of the search, at the request of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.

"He asked that Australia take responsibility for the search in the southern vector, which the Malaysian authorities now think was one possible flight path for this ill-fated aircraft," said Razak. "I agreed that we would do so.  I offered the Malaysian prime minister additional maritime surveillance resources which he gratefully accepted."  

Earlier, Abbott said he had not seen any signs the Malaysia Airlines flight carrying 239 people had come close to Australian airspace.

Family members of those missing and countries involved in the search have criticized Malaysia for repeatedly releasing seemingly contradictory or incomplete information.

China's Foreign Ministry Monday urged Malaysia to "immediately" expand and clarify the scope of the search, saying it should provide "more thorough, accurate information to countries participating."

Defense Minister Hishammuddin Monday denied holding back crucial information.  He said he would not withhold any details that could help, but that any information released "must be verified by international investigation teams."

Meanwhile, Malaysian investigators are more closely examining the final moments before the plane disappeared from civilian radar.

Malaysia Airlines CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya says the last known message from the cockpit - a calm, "All right, goodnight" - is believed to have come from the plane's co-pilot.

But investigators now say it is not clear whether the radio transmission came before or after a signaling system was partially disabled or switched off, allowing the plane to further avoid detection.

The voice in the cockpit did not mention any trouble on board, suggesting he may have been misleading ground control or acting under coercion by someone familiar with aviation technology.

Authorities are also investigating the pilots and engineers who may have had contact with the plane before it left Kuala Lumpur.

The missing passenger plane was flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it disappeared.  About two-thirds of the people on board were Chinese. Other passengers included Europeans and Americans.

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Comment Sorting
March 17, 2014 7:19 AM
Malaysian military radars picked up the presumably missing MH370 about an hour after takeoff soon after it disappeared from civilian radars.Why didn't they scramble fighter jets to investigate or intercept the plane? The Malaysians still witholds a lot of informations and has been wasting other countries's times and resources. Would you just sit back and do nothing if some unidentified plane violates your airspace?

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