News / Asia

    Malaysia Approves International Investigation into MH370

    Malaysia's Defense Minister and acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein speaks at a news conference in Kuala Lumpur, Apr. 23, 2014.
    Malaysia's Defense Minister and acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein speaks at a news conference in Kuala Lumpur, Apr. 23, 2014.
    VOA News
    Malaysia's Cabinet approved on Wednesday the appointment of an international team
    to investigate the disappearance of missing Malaysia Airlines  Flight MH370, the country's acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said.

    "The main purpose of the international investigation team is to evaluate, investigate and determine the actual cause of the accident so similar accidents could be avoided in the future," Hishammuddin told reporters in Kuala Lumpur.

    Hishammuddin added that the government has had talks with Malaysian state oil firm Petronas and other unidentified entities to expand the deep-sea search for the missing plane in the southern Indian Ocean.

    Meanwhile, the Australian agency coordinating the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 said unidentified material has washed ashore in western Australia and officials are investigating whether it is related to the missing plane.

    In a statement, the Joint Agency Coordination Center said officials are "examining photographs of the material to determine whether further physical analysis is required and if there is any relevance to the search of missing flight MH370."

    A massive, multinational search has uncovered no confirmed trace of the plane, nearly seven weeks after the Boeing 777 disappeared mysteriously while on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board.

    Earlier Wednesday, Australian officials vowed to continue the search, even as a robotic submarine is about to complete the first phase of its, so far, unsuccessful scan of the Indian Ocean seabed.

    The Joint Agency Coordination Center said the Bluefin-21 underwater drone has completed more than 80 percent of its first full mission without finding any "contacts of interest."

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Wednesday if the drone fails to locate any debris, authorities will "rethink the search." But he said the hunt will not be abandoned. He said the families of the victims deserve to know what happened.

    Defense Minister David Johnston, meanwhile, told the Associated Press that more powerful, commercial sonar equipment could soon be deployed to help explore the 4.5-kilometer deep search area.

    The search effort is currently focused on a 10-kilometer radius surrounding the spot where authorities heard a signal they believe came from the locator beacon on the plane's flight data recorder. The batteries on the so-called "black box" recorder have since run out.

    On the ocean surface, ships continue to search a wider area for debris. But for the second consecutive day Wednesday, Australian authorities suspended the aerial search because of poor weather conditions.

    Malaysian authorities believe someone intentionally diverted the plane. But they refuse to rule out the possibility that the Malaysia Airlines jet experienced a major mechanical malfunction.

    Some information for this report provided by Reuters.

    You May Like

    Video Twists and Turns Aplenty in US Presidential Race

    Even as Americans pause for this week’s Memorial Day holiday, much attention is focused on the presidential contest

    Iran Orders Social Media Sites to Store Data Inside Country

    New requirements are expected to affect the instant messaging app Telegram, which has more than 20 million users inside Iran

    The Struggle With Painkillers: Treating Pain Without Feeding Addiction

    'Wonder drug' pain medications have turned out to be major problem: not only do they run high risk of addicting the user, but they can actually make patients' chronic pain worse, US CDC says

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora