News / Asia

Malaysia Asks Pentagon for Underwater Surveillance Equipment

A Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion returns from a search for MalaysianA Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion returns from a search for Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 over the Indian Ocean, at RAAF Base Pearce, north of Perth March 21, 2014.
A Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion returns from a search for MalaysianA Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion returns from a search for Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 over the Indian Ocean, at RAAF Base Pearce, north of Perth March 21, 2014.
VOA News
Malaysia is asking the Pentagon for underwater surveillance equipment to help with the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet.

A Pentagon spokesman says Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein made the request Friday during a telephone conversation with U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

The spokesman did not say exactly what equipment the U.S. might provide, but that Hagel is considering the request and whether it would be helpful in looking for the aircraft.

There was no sign of wreckage after a daylong air and sea search Friday of the southern Indian Ocean off Australia.

Australian satellite pictures show two large objects floating in the water which investigators say could be from the Boeing 777.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott told reporters his country is "throwing everything we've got" in an effort to find Flight 370.

"We have an Australian naval ship that is steaming as fast as it can to the area. It is an extremely remote part of the southern Indian Ocean," said Abbott. "It is about 3,000 kilometers southwest of Perth. It's about the most inaccessible spot that you could imagine on the face of the Earth, but if there is anything down there we will find it. We owe it to the families of those people to do no less."

A pilot from New Zealand, Lieutenant Tim McAlevey, said he is  disappointed but has every confidence that the floating objects will be found. "It's certainly disappointing and I've got every confidence that if there is an object there that we will find it and every time that we launch we hold that hope; however, we are just going to keep going until we find it.''

The Malaysia Airlines jet with 239 people on board disappeared two weeks ago during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. There has been no firm evidence, so far, of what happened to the jet.

Investigators are not ruling out anything, including catastrophic mechanical failure, terrorism, or pilot suicide. They say it is possible that someone with knowledge of planes diverted it far off course.

Twenty-six nations have been hunting for the plane across an area covering more than 7 million square kilometers, from Kazakhstan to the southern Indian Ocean.

  • 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.

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Comment Sorting
by: musawi melake
March 23, 2014 1:21 PM
All these talks of greater and greater technological and Super-Power involvements tempts to point towards one thing, i.e. there are ulterier motives behind this; by doing these things they may be trying to ward off the Chinese from establishing a foot hold in Indian-ocean or they want to know extent of it if the Chinese have already done so. This would also endanger the Indians' ambition of becoming a so called Super-Power in the future. Chinses and Indians should wake up to the challenge!

by: patrick from: mexico
March 22, 2014 3:12 PM
DO NOT give it to them. Do not sell it to them.
Be sympathetic. Politely let them know that the towel
has been washed first.

dispense with this code

by: Anonymous
March 21, 2014 10:26 PM
Show me the money for the underwater equipment.

by: Mark from: Virginia
March 21, 2014 9:01 PM
Something I thought of earlier today, just a crumb of thought that hopefully will explain the awesome scope and breadth of this search to all those 'armchair experts' out there, who wonder how hard it is to find something so large as an airliner...
Try this experiment tonight.... Take a small object, say, the size of a small coin, step outside in the dark of the night, close your eyes and spin around completely. Then, with your eyes still shut, toss that object as hard as you can into your yard, then go inside. In the morning, and for several mornings thereafter, go outside and try to find that small object.. not knowing where you tossed it, but knowing it HAS to be in your yard, somewhere. Good luck in your search. Oh, and to add some pressure to your search, the item you toss is something valuable that belonged to a family member who did not want to lose it, and demands that your find it... and who will badger you unceasingly to find it every day until you do find it.
Then, and only then, you might, just might, know what it feels like to be in Malaysia's shoes. Oh, and don't forget to ask your neighbors for help finding it, so they can tromp all over your yard and possible conceal any signs with their activities and their searching, thus making it all the harder for your in your search.
That is the situation facing Malaysian officials right now, and have been facing for the past two weeks. Only what was lost is not one precious item, but 239 precious items, one jet that carried them, and a huge surface of water and land to search. Not so easy a task is it, rather daunting a task.. would you not agree?

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