News / Asia

Australia Vows to Continue Hunt for Malaysian Jet

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is guided around a Royal Australian Air Force P-3C Orion aircraft by Australian Air Force Group Commander Craig Heap, second from left, in Bullsbrook, near Perth, Australia,  March 31, 2014.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is guided around a Royal Australian Air Force P-3C Orion aircraft by Australian Air Force Group Commander Craig Heap, second from left, in Bullsbrook, near Perth, Australia, March 31, 2014.
Ron Corben
Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott, whose country is taking a lead role to find the missing Malaysian jet, says he has set no time limit on the search for the aircraft. Officials said debris spotted Sunday that was considered to be a promising lead, instead turned out to be fishing equipment.
 
In recent weeks, satellites and spotter planes have located hundreds of pieces of debris that investigators have hoped could be traced to flight MH370. But so far, they have not found any debris or objects from the missing plane.
 
On Monday, a flotilla of 11 ships, including seven from China, and 10 aircraft scoured a 254,000 square kilometer area of the Indian Ocean. The searchers reported several more objects identified as promising leads.
 
Despite the frustrations, Abbott said there was no immediate time limit on efforts to find the plane.
 
"I'm certainly not putting a time limit on [the search]," he said in Perth, Monday. "We owe it to the families, we owe it to everyone who travels by air, we owe it to the governments of the countries who had citizens on that aircraft, we owe it to the wider world which has been transfixed by this mystery for three weeks now, we owe it to everyone to do whatever we reasonably can and we can keep searching for quite some time to come."
 
Abbott said the intensity of the operations was increasing despite challenges and the magnitude of operations of what he termed "an extraordinarily difficult exercise."

Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said Monday he is traveling to Hawaii this week to meet with the U.S. defense secretary to discuss the search effort. He will also speak with fellow ASEAN Defense Ministers while in Honolulu.

Malaysian authorities say they are working with Australia to create a new Joint Agency Coordination Center, headed by a retired Australian Air Chief Marshal, that will coordinate the international search effort out of Pearce Air force base in Perth, Australia.

A ship carrying a specialized black box locator is due to arrive in the search area on Thursday. Investigators hope that if they can get the device within range of the aircraft’s flight recorder, it will be able to detect its signal and searchers will be able to locate the main wreckage of the aircraft.
 
Twenty six nations are involved in the search for Malaysian flight MH370 that disappeared off radar on March 8 while bound for Beijing with 239 passengers and crew on board. The majority of those on the plane - 154 - are Chinese nationals.
 
  • 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.

More flotsam

Dozens of items have been spotted since Australian authorities moved the search 1,100 km (685 miles) north after new analysis of radar and satellite data, but none has been linked to Flight MH370.

Several orange items recovered on Sunday turned out to be fishing equipment, a spokesman from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) said.

"Yesterday's finds were nothing of note, nothing related to the plane," he said.

A multinational air search team and 10 ships, including seven Chinese vessels, two Australian navy craft and a merchant ship, were searching the area on Monday.

A Malaysian frigate arrived at HMAS Stirling naval base near Perth for briefings on the search area, AMSA added. The new search area, while closer to Perth and subject to
calmer weather, is also closer to an area of the Indian Ocean where currents drag all manner of flotsam and rubbish.

"I would say the search area is located just outside of what we call the garbage patches," Erik van Sebille, an oceanographer at the University of New South Wales said.

"However, there is much more debris there than in the Southern Ocean. Debris from Western Australia that ends up in the garbage patches will have to move through the search area."

But the greatest problem remains the vast search area, roughly the size of Poland or New Mexico.

"If you compare this to Air France Flight 447, we had much better positional information of where that aircraft went into the water," U.S. Navy Captain Mark Matthews said on Sunday, referring to a plane that crashed in 2009 near Brazil and which took more than two years to find.

Chinese family members still angry

Family members of the Chinese nationals on board the Boeing 777 have strongly protested Malaysia's handling of the situation.
 
In recent days, several Chinese family members travelled to Kuala Lumpur to press the Malaysian government, as well as aircraft maker Boeing and engine producer, Rolls Royce, for more information.
 
But on Monday, the state-backed China Daily published a commentary that appeared to soften the official tone, saying people should "not let anger prevail" and for families to accept the tragedy. The newspaper said all that can be done is to continue the search for the wreckage.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Paradei
X
Anush Avetisyan
November 26, 2014 10:57 PM
Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid