News / Asia

    Bad Weather Halts Jet Search; New Satellite Shows Objects

    • The Bluefin 21, the Artemis autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), is hoisted back on board the Australian Defence Vessel Ocean Shield after a successful buoyancy test in the southern Indian Ocean as part of the continuing search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, April 4, 2014.
    • Flight Lieutenant Stephen Graham monitors a TAC station onboard a Royal New Zealand Air Force P3 Orion during search operations for wreckage and debris of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean, near the coast of Western Australia, April 4, 2014.
    • Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force Commander Hidetsugu Iwamasa speaks to the press in front of one of their P-3C Orion aircraft currently at RAAF Base Pearce near Perth, Australia, April 4, 2014.
    • Relatives of Chinese passengers on board the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 pray in a prayer room, Beijing, China, April 4, 2014.
    • Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak tour RAAF Base Pearce, near Perth, April 3, 2014.
    • Steve Wang a representative from the committee for relatives of Chinese passengers onboard Flight MH370 talks to journalists after a closed door meeting with Malaysian officials via teleconference in Beijing, April 2, 2014.
    • A crew member sits in the cockpit of a Royal New Zealand Air Force patrol aircraft as it continues searching in the southern Indian Ocean for Flight MH370, April 1, 2014.
    • Koji Kubota of the Japan Coast Guard keeps watch while flying in the search zone for debris from Flight MH370, April 1, 2014.
    • A Buddhist monk welcomes Chinese relatives of passengers on Flight MH370 as they arrive to pray at a Buddhist temple in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, March 31, 2014.
    • Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott addresses the international forces currently based in Perth searching for Flight MH370 during his visit to RAAF Base Pearce, March 31, 2014.
    Ron Corben
    Poor weather conditions have again hampered the search for the missing Malaysian jet as aircraft were forced to suspend operations due to low cloud cover. The setback Thursday came as newly released satellite imagery from Thailand detected hundreds of objects floating in the southern Indian Ocean.

    The suspension of operations Thursday highlights the enormous challenge facing the half dozen nations scouring the southern Indian Ocean for missing Malaysian jet MH370, which disappeared March 8.

    It was the second occasion this week that the search effort for the flight, with its 239 passengers and crew, had to be suspended due to poor weather.

    A Chinese search aircraft, llyushin IL-76, was one of those aircraft forced to return to Perth, Australia, where search operations are being coordinated.  Zang Bing, the captain of the aircraft, said the plane had flown as low as 700 meters, but visibility was affected by cloud cover.

    Zhang said the aircraft had arrived at the search area on schedule but faced very bad weather conditions and was ordered by Australia to cut short the search and return to base.

    Thai satellite detects new objects
     
    In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.
    x
    In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.
    In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.
    Meanwhile, a Thai satellite detected some 300 suspected objects near the search area for the missing Boeing 777. The objects, reported to be between two and 10 meters in size, were photographed three days ago, roughly 200 kilometers away from a previous sighting by a French satellite.

    But so far, none of the spotted items have been conclusively linked to the missing aircraft.

    Frustration in China

    Of the 227 passengers on board the MH370, 153 were Chinese. In China, frustrations over the search effort have led authorities to pressure Malaysian authorities to release more information.
     
    On Thursday in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei again called for more accurate information from Malaysia on the details of the search.
     
    He said China would step up efforts in the search for the missing aircraft, adding that he hoped Malaysia would also improve its communications with China, and work with all relevant countries in the search and console passengers' families.

    Some aviation analysts are becoming skeptical of efforts to locate debris more than two weeks after the aircraft went down in a remote part of the Indian Ocean.

    Hugh Ritchie, chief executive of Aviation Consultants International, said there is growing doubt that the items captured on satellite imagery are linked to the Boeing 777 jet.

    "I'm still relatively skeptical," he said. "I'd be very dubious whether these pieces of flotsam and jetsam that is out there are in actual fact from the aircraft. It's 18 odd days since this occurred -  to be still floating put there - most of the things if they were able to float would probably be under the water now anyway, water logged. Air planes of this nature are not built to float."

    Searchers are scrambling to locate the main body of the aircraft that contains the “black box” flight and voice recorder, which could contain important clues about the flight’s disappearance. But experts say the device, which sends “pings” when in contact with water, likely only has enough battery to transmit its location for another two weeks.

    You May Like

    Ugandan Opposition Candidate: Only Intimidation, Vote Buying Can Prevent Victory

    Kizza Besigye says he has been drawing large crowds and claims he has widespred support ahead of Feb. 18 vote

    HRW: Both Sides in Ukraine Conflict Targeted, Used Schools

    Rights group documents how both sides in Ukraine conflict carried out attacks on schools and used them for military purposes

    Sanctions Just Got Real for Over 54,000 North Koreans

    Shuttering of Kaesong complex ends virtually any hope of peaceful settlement to long-standing tensions on Korean peninsula in near future

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Christian from: UK
    March 27, 2014 5:27 PM
    Maybe they need a little bit longer to allow the evidence to sink!

    The spotlight should be on the cargo manifest to establish precisely what the aircraft was carrying in its hold!

    by: Ken the Patriot from: NC
    March 27, 2014 5:04 PM
    300 objects detected, but not a single one is identifiable as being from a plane.
    I find that odd.

    by: Anynonomous from: USA
    March 27, 2014 7:01 AM
    Wow....a country other than England, France or China has satellite images of debris....19 days later...and who would have thought it'd be Thailand

    by: mary from: usa
    March 27, 2014 6:51 AM
    I'm kind of sick about this satelite findings. How come the rescuers can't find anything even a lifevest? Really?
    In Response

    by: meanbill from: USA
    March 27, 2014 9:36 AM
    These searchers couldn't find a shoebox in a closet.... REALLY

    by: David433785
    March 27, 2014 5:19 AM
    Malaysian Prime Minister must be brought to justice for covering up the truth and delaying the rescue by providing misleading information.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growthi
    X
    February 10, 2016 5:54 AM
    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Civil Rights Pioneer Remembers Struggle for Voting Rights

    February is Black History Month in the United States. The annual, month-long national observance pays tribute to important people and events that shaped the history of African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins reports how one man fought against discrimination to help millions of blacks obtain the right to vote
    Video

    Video Jordanian Theater Group Stages Anti-Terrorism Message

    The lure of the self-styled “Islamic State” has many parents worried about their children who may be susceptible to the organization’s online propaganda. Dozens of Muslim communities in the Middle East are fighting back -- giving young adults alternatives to violence. One group in Jordan is using dramatic expression a send a family message. Mideast Broadcasting Network correspondent Haider Al Abdali shared this report with VOA. It’s narrated by Bronwyn Benito
    Video

    Video Migrant Crisis Fuels Debate Over Britain’s Future in EU

    The migrant crisis in Europe is fueling the debate in Britain ahead of a referendum on staying in the European Union that may be held this year. Prime Minister David Cameron warns that leaving the EU could lead to thousands more migrants arriving in the country. Meanwhile, tension is rising in Calais, France, where thousands of migrants are living in squalid camps. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Families Flee Aleppo for Kurdish Regions in Syria

    Not all who flee the fighting in Aleppo are trying to cross the border into Turkey. A VOA reporter caught up with several families heading for Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.