Search area broadened, still no evidence of jet

 

 

A plane of New Zealand Air Force returns to Pearce Air Force Base after a searching

flight for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 near Perth, Australia,

on April 2, 2014.   Photo by Yan Hao 

 

A plane of New Zealand Air Force returns to Pearce Air Force Base after a searching flight

for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 near Perth, Australia, on April 2, 2014.

Photo by Lui Siu Wei 

 

A plane of Royal Australian Air Force returns to Pearce Air Force Base after a searching

flight for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 near Perth, Australia, on April 2, 2014.

Photo by Lui Siu Wei 

 

 

 

 

PERTH, Australia   2014-04-03   00:17:34

>>  Search area broadened, still no evidence of jet

By He Jing and Zhang Xiaojun

About 10 planes and nine ships combed a broader swathe of sea in southern Indian Ocean on Wednesday but left searchers with no sign of the Malaysian MH370 jetliner more than three weeks after it vanished.

The 221,000-square-kilometer patch of sea, some 1,504 kilometers west northwest of Perth, doubled the size of the targeted area the previous day, according to the newly formed Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) that coordinates the search operation.

No sightings of any objects related to the missing flight have been reported although the weather in the search area was fair.

The JACC has assembled a team of experts to model the movement of any debris of MH370 that might remain floating since March 8 when it mysteriously veered off course en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people aboard.

The protracted international effort was boosted Wednesday with the join of British navy submarine, HMS Tireless, which has arrived in the area and is ready to contribute to locating the missing jet.

An Australian E-7A Wedgetail aircraft capable of deconflicting air space in the search area also assisted in the mission which has dragged on for more than three weeks but turned out to be fruitless as yet.

Hopes of a breakthrough had been raised after the Australian Maritime Safety Authority revealed a new search zone about 1,100 kilometers northeast of the previous one on Friday based on analysis that the plane had been traveling faster than previously thought.

Clock is ticking for finding black boxes of the jet as the battery-powered voice and data recorders could stop emitting ” pings” about 30 days after the plane went missing. The Ocean Shield, an Australian warship with a black-box detector on board, is due to reach the search area on Thursday.

Ships and planes have focused on the Gulf of Thailand and South China Sea where the flight lost contact and then shifted west to the Strait of Malacca where it was last spotted by military radar. New analysis of satellite data then made experts believe that the jet had ended somewhere in the southern Indian Ocean.

Retired Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, who heads the JACC, said that limited flight data and hostile sea conditions made the hunt even more difficult.

“We don’t have a precise aircraft location for six hours before the aircraft went into the water somewhere,” he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on Wednesday.

The former defense force chief noted that the task to find the remains of MH370 will take time and if wreckage can not be found on the surface, they would eventually have to be “in consultation with everybody who has a stake in this, review what we do next.”

At the invitation of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is scheduled to arrive in Perth late Wednesday for a two-day official visit.

Najib will tour Royal Australian Air Force Base Pearce on Thursday to personally thank the international forces involved in the MH370 hunt and receive briefings from the JACC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PERTH, Australia   2014-04-03   00:07:22

>>  Search area broadened, still no evidence of jet

By He Jing and Zhang Xiaojun

About 10 planes and nine ships combed a broader swathe of sea in southern Indian Ocean on Wednesday but left searchers with no sign of the Malaysian MH370 jetliner more than three weeks after it vanished.

The 221,000-square-kilometer patch of sea, some 1,504 kilometers west northwest of Perth, doubled the size of the targeted area the previous day, according to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA).

No sightings of any objects related to the missing flight have been reported although the weather in the search area was fair.

The AMSA has assembled a team of experts to model the movement of any debris of MH370 that might remain floating since March 8 when it mysteriously veered off course en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people aboard.

The protracted international effort was boosted Wednesday with the join of British navy submarine, HMS Tireless, which has arrived in the area and is ready to contribute to locating the missing jet.

An Australian E-7A Wedgetail aircraft capable of deconflicting air space in the search area also assisted in the mission which has dragged on for more than three weeks but turned out to be fruitless as yet.

Hopes of a breakthrough had been raised after AMSA revealed a new search zone about 1,100 kilometers northeast of the previous one on Friday based on analysis that the plane had been traveling faster than previously thought.

Clock is ticking for finding black boxes of the jet as the battery-powered voice and data recorders could stop emitting ” pings” about 30 days after the plane went missing. The Ocean Shield, an Australian warship with a black-box detector on board, is due to reach the search area on Thursday.

Ships and planes have focused on the Gulf of Thailand and South China Sea where the flight lost contact and then shifted west to the Strait of Malacca where it was last spotted by military radar. New analysis of satellite data then made experts believe that the jet had ended somewhere in the southern Indian Ocean.

Retired Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, who heads the Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) coordinating the operation, said that limited flight data and hostile sea conditions made the hunt even more difficult.

“We don’t have a precise aircraft location for six hours before the aircraft went into the water somewhere,” he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on Wednesday.

The former defense force chief noted that the task to find the remains of MH370 will take time and if wreckage can not be found on the surface, they would eventually have to be “in consultation with everybody who has a stake in this, review what we do next.”

At the invitation of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is scheduled to arrive in Perth late Wednesday for a two-day official visit.

Najib will tour Royal Australian Air Force Base Pearce on Thursday to personally thank the international forces involved in the MH370 hunt and receive briefings from the newly formed JACC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING   2014-04-02   23:56:17

>>  Search for MH370 goes on as China, Australia agree to step up efforts

By Xiong Ping

The search for Malaysian flight MH370 continued Wednesday, while Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Australian counterpart Tony Abbott agreed to continue all-out efforts to find the missing plane.

Efforts continued Wednesday with the first aircraft, a Chinese Ilyushin IL-76 plane, departing for the search area in the southern Indian Ocean west of Perth at 6 a.m. local time, the Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) said.

An Australian E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control aircraft assisted in Wednesday’s mission. The Wedgetail spy plane, capable of deconflicting air space in the search area, will act as an air traffic controller.

The Australian defense vessel Ocean Shield, with a black-box detector on board, is also on its way to the region.

About 10 aircraft and nine ships are involved in the operation, which faced broken cloud, sea fog and isolated thunderstorms Wednesday.

Chinese ships focused their search on a rectangle-shaped area covering 220,000 square km with its center at about 29 degrees south latitude and 101 degrees east longitude, northeast of Tuesday’s search area, Jiang Long, captain of the Chinese vessel Haixun 01, said.

Four Chinese military vessels have been assigned to the southern part of the new area, while Haixun 01, Nanhaijiu 115 and Donghaijiu 101 will search in the northern patch, Xinhua has learned.

Haixun 01 had found and ruled out 12 suspicious objects, and nothing related to the missing plane had been found so far, Jiang said Tuesday.

The Malaysian government confirmed Wednesday a British nuclear submarine would join the search.

On the same day, Abbott updated Chinese Premier Li in a phone hook-up Wednesday with the latest developments in the mission, as well as the ongoing investigation.

Li appreciated the Australian authorities’ efforts.

He said China would continue to cooperate and communicate closely with the relevant agencies in Australia, Malaysia and other parties to make all-out efforts as the search continued, while at the same time conducting a thorough investigation, Li said.

Abbott spoke highly of China’s input, saying his country would work with China, Malaysia and others to better communication and cooperation, and step up its search efforts to the best of its ability.

Meanwhile, Malaysian Inspector General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar said Wednesday all 227 passengers on board the missing flight had been “cleared” of links to hijacking, sabotage and psychological or personal problems by the police.

He said the cabin crew, including the pilot and the co-pilot, were still being investigated in these four areas, noting police would not release any findings for fear of jeopardizing the ongoing probe.

Malaysian government officials briefed Chinese families on the investigation and pledged to continue doing everything to find the missing craft, a statement from the Malaysian Transport Ministry said Wednesday.

A special briefing session was held for the Chinese relatives of those on board MH370 at Hotel Bangi in Putrajaya, the administrative center of Malaysia.

The briefing session was moderated by the Malaysian Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to China Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting.

The briefing was also telecast live to other Chinese families gathered in Beijing.

“China had more nationals on board MH370 than any other country. Malaysia recognizes its duty to provide the government of China with verified information, which it can then use to brief the Chinese relatives of those on board MH370,” a statement said.

Malaysia also sent a delegation to Beijing led by Deputy Foreign Minister Dato’ Hamzah Zainudin, who met Chinese counterparts Vice Foreign Ministers Zhang Yesui and Liu Jianchao.

Attempts are being made by the Malaysian government to reduce tensions with the Chinese families, who have expressed dissatisfaction with the steps taken by the Malaysian government since the flight went missing more than 20 days ago.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak was scheduled to arrive in Australia later Wednesday to meet Abbott and visit the headquarters for the search operations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PERTH   2014-04-02   23:46:28

>>  Malaysia’s Najib to arrive in Perth to meet int’l search forces for MH370

By Yan Hao

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is scheduled to arrive in Western Australian city of Perth on Wednesday evening to pay a two-day visit to the front line of an international joint search effort for the Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in southern India sea which continued to be fruitless after the Boeing 777 vanished for nearly four weeks.

During the visit, at the personal invitation of his Australian counterpart, Tony Abbott, Najib will receive briefings on the search effort at the Royal Australian Air Force Base Pearce, about 38 kilometers north to downtown Perth.

According to Prime Minister Abbott’s office, Najib will tour Base Pearce and personally thank the international forces taking part in the search, and he will see first-hand the dedication and skill of the international contingent that has marshaled resources for the search.

Abbott said in a press release that “we continue to hope that answers to the baffling mystery behind MH370 will be found to give some comfort to the grieving family and friends of passengers and crew.”

Najib will be accompanied by Abbott and Australian minister for defense who will receive briefings from the recently formed Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) headed by retired Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston.

Ten aircraft and nine ships searched an area of about 237,000 square kilometers on Wednesday, about 1,500 kilometers west northwest of Perth. There were so far no sightings reported of any objects related to the missing MH370, according to Australian initiative JACC in Perth.

Weather in the search area was fair, with visibility of approximately 10 kilometers.

Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless has arrived in the southern Indian Ocean and been tasked to assist in the search for flight MH370 as part of the international effort.

HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar Class submarine, has advanced underwater search capability, which will be a valuable contribution to the search for the missing plane, the JACC said.

Additionally, HMS Echo is in the search area to assist in efforts to locate the transponder on the black box with its advanced environmental assessment capability that will help to optimize search operations.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau continued to refine the area where the aircraft entered the water based on continuing ground-breaking and multi-disciplinary technical analysis of satellite communication and aircraft performance, passed from the international air crash investigative team comprising analysts from Malaysia, the United States, the United Kingdom, China and Australia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPUR   2014-04-02   20:58:36

>>  Malaysian PM to meet Australian counterpart for update on MH370

By Uditha Jayasinghe

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak will meet with his Australian counterpart Tony Abbot for talks on recovering missing flight MH370 on Thursday, a statement released by the Transport Ministry said Wednesday.

Razak, who is expected to arrive in Australia’s Perth late on Wednesday, is due to visit Pearce Air Force base on Thursday morning to meet with personnel involved in the multinational search operation for MH370.

The Malaysian Prime Minister will also be briefed on the latest developments regarding the search.

Razak will then hold a bilateral meeting with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot later on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Malaysian Defence Minister and Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein is currently attending the US-ASEAN Defence Forum in Hawaii.

On Wednesday the minister had a telephone call with British Secretary of State for Defence Phillip Hammond. During the call Hammond confirmed that Britain would send HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar-class nuclear submarine with sonar capabilities, to help in the multinational search operation for MH370.

Nine ships and nine aircraft are searching a vast area roughly 930 miles west of Perth.

Three more ships, two Australian and one Malaysian, are on their way to the search zone. Britain HMS Tireless is expected to join Australian ship Ocean Shield to hunt for MH370′s black box.

With the search now reaching its fourth week, investigators are running out of time to locate the “ping” set off by the black box.

Malaysian government officials on Wednesday also briefed the Chinese families on the search of MH370 and pledged to continue doing everything to find the missing flight.

A special briefing session was held for the Chinese relatives of those on board MH370.

The briefing took place from 10 a.m.to 1 p.m. local time at the Hotel Bangi in Putrajaya.

The briefing session was moderated by the Malaysian Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to China Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting. “Throughout the process, I want to assure you that we have done everything in our power to locate MH370. We have spared no effort and expense. We have worked hard, and cooperated with everyone who could help, including the people who are here,” Civil Aviation Department Director General Datuk Azharuddin told the families. The briefing was also telecast live to Beijing so families there could receive the briefing in real time. The technical briefing was provided by the Department of Civil Aviation and Chinese technical experts.  

 

 

 

 

 

Director General of the Malaysian Civil Aviation Department Azharuddin Abdul Rahman

(center) speaks during a press conference in a hotel, 40 km from Kuala Lumpur, Selangor,

Malaysia, on April 2, 2014. Malaysian Civil Aviation Department and Malaysian Airlines

held a press conference for Chinese relatives of passengers on board the missing Malaysia

Airlines Flight MH370 in Selangor on Wednesday.   Photo by Chong Voon Chung 

 

Head of the Chinese government joint working group Guo Shaochun speaks to the media

in a hotel, 40 km from Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Malaysia, on April 2, 2014.   

Photo by Chong Voon Chung 

 

The chief of the Malaysian air force Rodzali Daud speaks to the media in a hotel, 40 km

from Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Malaysia, on April 2, 2014.   Photo by Chong Voon Chung

 

Director General of the Malaysian Civil Aviation Department Azharuddin Abdul

Rahman speaks during a press conference in a hotel, 40 km from Kuala Lumpur,

Selangor, Malaysia, on April 2, 2014.   Photo by Chong Voon Chung 

 

Chinese relatives of passengers attend a press conference in a hotel, 40 km from Kuala

Lumpur, Selangor, Malaysia, on April 2, 2014.   Photo by Chong Voon Chung

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPUR   2014-04-02   20:43:15

>>  Malaysia conducts briefing with MH370 Chinese families to reduce tensions

By Uditha Jayasinghe

Malaysian government officials briefed the Chinese families on the investigation of MH370 and pledged to continue doing everything to find the missing craft, a statement from the Transport Ministry said on Wednesday.

A special briefing session was held for the Chinese relatives of those on board MH370 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. local time at Hotel Bangi in Putrajaya.

The briefing session was moderated by the Malaysian Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to China Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting.

“Throughout the process, I want to assure you that we have done everything in our power to locate MH370. We have spared no effort and expense. We have worked hard, and cooperated with everyone who could help including the people who are here,” Civil Aviation Department Director General Datuk Azharuddin told the families.

The briefing was also telecast live to Beijing so families there could receive the briefing in real time.

The Chinese ambassador to Malaysia, chief of the Royal Malaysian Air Force and Malaysian Foreign Ministry’s deputy secretary general were also present at the briefing.

“China had more nationals on board MH370 than any other country. Malaysia recognizes its duty to provide the government of China with verified information, which it can then use to brief the Chinese relatives of those on board MH370,” the statement said.

“Since MH370 went missing, Malaysia has been in constant communication with the Chinese authorities, at numerous levels of government, to ensure an accurate and timely flow of information,” it added.

Since March 8, the Malaysian government has also been keeping officials from the Civil Aviation Administration of China, Aircraft Accident Investigation Department and members of the Chinese air force who have particular expertise in radar updated on developments.

In addition, Zhang Yesui, Chinese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and Special Envoy of the Government of China and Huang Huikang, the Chinese ambassador to Malaysia have also been briefed.

Malaysia also sent a delegation to Beijing led by Deputy Foreign Minister Dato’ Hamzah Zainudin, who met with his Chinese counterparts Vice Foreign Ministers Zhang Yesui and Liu Jianchao.

Attempts are being made by the Malaysian government to reduce tensions with the Chinese families who have expressed dissatisfaction with the steps taken by the Malaysian government since the flight went missing over 20 days ago.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is scheduled to arrive in Australia later Wednesday to meet Prime Minister Tony Abbott and see the headquarters for the Indian Ocean search operations for himself.

Nine ships and nine aircraft are scouring a vast area roughly 930 miles west of Perth, Australia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING   2014-04-02   20:14:35

>>  Chinese rescuers prepare for long MH370 search

By Tian Ye

Vice Chairman of the Central Military Commission(CMC) Fan Changlong on Wednesday told Chinese rescuers to prepare for protracted search for the missing Malaysian plane MH370.

After being briefed about the latest progress, Fan asked search teams to cooperate with international efforts and improve their operations.

On behalf of CMC and its chairman Xi Jinping, Fan extended greetings to the navy and air force troops engaged in the search and called on them to go all out to find the missing plane.

Flight MH370, a Boeing 777-200ER, went missing on its way to Beijing on March 8, shortly after taking off from Kuala Lumpur. The plane was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, including 154 Chinese.

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING   2014-04-02   19:31:05

>>  China, Australia PM agree to step up efforts in searching for missing jetliner

By Huangyi Jiazi

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and his Australian counterpart, Tony Abbott, agreed to continue to make all-out efforts to search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in a phone conversation on Wednesday.

Abbott updated the Chinese premier with the latest developments in the search and rescue mission, as well as the ongoing investigation.

Li appreciated what the Australian side has done in searching for the missing plane.

“The search is now faced with even more complexities and hardships,” Li said, adding that he expected the two sides to continue doing all they can instead of slacking off or even giving up, Li said.

To join the multinational search, China has already sent more than 10 ships and many aircraft to relocate, recover and review suspicious items spotted via airborne observation, said Li.

He also said Beijing has asked more than 60 passing merchant ships with Chinese nationality and 20 Chinese fishing boats operating in the Indian Ocean to help with the search.

The Chinese side will continue to cooperate and communicate closely with the relevant agencies in Australia, Malaysia and other parties to make all-out efforts as the search goes on, while at the same time conducting a thorough investigation, Li said.

Abbott, for his part, spoke highly of China’s input, saying his country is willing to work with China, Malaysia and others in bettering their communications and cooperation, and will step up its search efforts to the best of its ability.

The Australian prime minister also told Li that he is looking forward to the upcoming annual gatherings of the Boao Forum for Asia in China’s southern Province of Hainan, saying he expected to exchange views on how to promote Australia-China ties.

Australia is ready to work with China to speed up their talks over a bilateral trade agreement so as to deepen cooperation, he added.

In response, Li said his Australian counterpart has been committed to boosting a strategic partnership between the two sides since taking office, adding that Beijing highly values its relations with Canberra.

The Chinese premier also said that he believes Abbott’s China visit next week, as well as their talks, will inject fresh impetus into the development of bilateral ties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPER   2014-04-02   19:25:01

>>  British nuclear submarine to join missing flight search

By Shang Jun

The Malaysian government confirmed Wednesday that a British nuclear submarine will join the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

“Britain will send HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar-class nuclear submarine with sonar capabilities, to help in the multinational search operation for MH370,” the Malaysian Transport Ministry said in a statement.

The announcement was made by British Secretary of State for Defense Phillip Hammond at a phone call with Malaysian Defense Minister and acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein earlier Wednesday, according to the statement.

Flight MH370 went missing on March 8 en route from Kuala Lumper to Beijing, with its whereabouts still unknown after more than three weeks’ search.

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPER   2014-04-02   19:14:44

>>  Urgent: British nuclear submarine to join missing flight search, Malaysia says

By Shang Jun

The Malaysian government confirmed Wednesday that a British nuclear submarine will join the search for missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370.

“Britain will send HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar-class nuclear submarine with sonar capabilities, to help in the multinational search operation for MH370,” the Malaysian Transport Ministry said in a statement.

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPUR   2014-04-02   19:11:33

>>  ICAO says Malaysia Airlines “responsive” to investigation on missing plane

By Liu Meixuan

An official of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) said Malaysia Airlines (MAS) had been “very responsive” to the investigation into the incident of the missing plane, Malaysia’s state news agency Bernama reported on Wednesday.

ICAO air navigation bureau director Nancy Graham said the ICAO would have to wait for the outcome of the investigation before considering corrective action, if any.

“Despite all our good intentions and wonderful safety initiatives, accidents do happen,” she said on the sidelines of the two-day International Air Transport Association Ops Conference 2014, which ended Wednesday.

Graham further said no speculation should be made on the missing jetliner until the investigation was completed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPUR   2014-04-02   16:39:02

>>  Passengers on missing plane “cleared” in four probe areas: Malaysian official

By Zhao Bochao

Malaysian Inspector General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar said Wednesday that all the passengers on board the missing MH370 flight had been “cleared” of hijacking, sabotage or having psychological or personal problems by the police, according to the Malaysian state news agency Bernama.

The investigation has freed the 227 passengers from the four elements, he said.

“They have been cleared of the four (elements). It (is) according to our own procedure (investigation),” Khalid said after officiating a seminar for the police.

He said the cabin crew, including the pilot and the co-pilot, are still being investigated in these four areas.

Khalid said the police have so far recorded statements from over 170 individuals on the incident, adding that more statements would be recorded.

He said the police would not release any findings of the investigation in case it would jeopardize the ongoing probe.

 

 

 

 

ABOARD HAIXUN 01   2014-04-02 14:03:33

>>  Chinese ships continue search for missing Malaysian flight

By Hu Yao

Chinese ships searching for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 focused their search on a rectangle-shaped search area in waters west of Australia’s Perth Wednesday, said captain of the Chinese vessel Haixun 01.

The new area, covering 220,000 square km with its center at about 29 degrees south latitude and 101 degrees east longitude, is northeastward from the search area designated for Tuesday, said captain Jiang Long.

Seven planes and eight ships will assist in Wednesday’s search for missing plane, the Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) announced.

Four Chinese military vessels will be responsible for search in the southern part of the newly-designated area, while Haixun 01, Nanhaijiu 115 and Donghaijiu 101 will search in the northern patch, Xinhua has learned.

The Chinese ship Haixun 01 has found and ruled out 12 suspicious objects, and nothing related to the missing plane has been found so far, Jiang said Tuesday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PERTH, Australia   2014-04-02   12:18:04

>>  Search for Malaysian flight MH370 continues amid marginal weather forecast

By He Jing and Yan Hao

About 10 planes and nine ships will search a swathe of the southern Indian Ocean west of Perth on Wednesday in a consistent effort to find the trace of the vanished Malaysian flight MH370.

The first aircraft, a Chinese Ilyushin IL-76 plane, departed for the search area at 6 a.m. local time Wednesday, the Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) said.

An Australian E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control aircraft will also assist in Wednesday’s mission which has dragged on for more than three weeks but yielded no results.

The Wedgetail spy plane, capable of deconflicting air space in the search area, will act as an air traffic controller.

The Australian defense vessel Ocean Shield has a black-box detector on board and is on its way to the region.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has determined a search zone of about 221,000 square kilometers, 1,504 km northwest of Perth.

Areas of broken cloud, sea fog and isolated thunderstorms have been forecast for the day which may reduce visibility in the search zone.

The task to find the wreckage of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 will take time and may not be resolved in the near future, Australia’s former defense chief Angus Houston, who heads the newly established Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) has said.

If wreckage can not be found on the surface, “we are eventually going to have to, probably, in consultation with everybody who has a stake in this, review what we do next, ” he told the press on Tuesday.

Hopes of a breakthrough had been raised after the AMSA revealed a new search area about 1,100 km northeast of the previous zones on Friday based on analysis that the plane had been traveling faster than previously thought.

But Houston disclosed that since it was not known that altitude and speed the plane was traveling, the analysis was a “very inexact science.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPUR   2014-04-02 11:22:48

>>  Missing plane search classified as criminal investigation

By Zhao Bochao

Malaysian Inspector General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar said Wednesday that the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 was a criminal investigation, and there were things they could not share, according to local newspaper New Straits Times.

“We are investigating based on the four areas of focus ( personal and psychological problems, sabotage and hijacking),” Khalid said at a press conference after opening the Royal Malaysian Police Quality and Innovation Seminar 2014.

He said until now there had been about 170 statements recorded from family members of the passengers and crew on board the missing jetliner.

Khalid said the investigators did have some clues of what happened, but they would not reveal anything as the investigation was ongoing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

HANOI   2014-04-02   11:24:28

>>  Vietnam hailed for Malaysian jet search

By Anh

Vietnam was hailed for its activeness in search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

The remark was made at a meeting among defense attachs from 21 countries and Vietnamese defense ministry’s department of foreign relations and Vietnam people’s army general staff’s rescue department in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi earlier Tuesday.

From March 8 to 15, Vietnam mobilized nearly 2,400 personnel, 11 planes of various kinds, 10 ships and one set of tracking radar, reported Vietnam’s state-run radio Voice of Vietnam Wednesday.

In addition, some 815 fishing vessels also joined in the search.

During the hunt, Vietnam allowed 12 planes and 19 vessels from China, China’s Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, and the United States to enter its waters to search for the plane.

 

 

 

 

 

 

KUALA LUMPUR   2014-04-02   11:22:48

>>  Missing plane search classified as criminal investigation

By Zhao Bochao

Malaysian Inspector General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar said Wednesday that the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 was a criminal investigation, and there were things they could not share, according to local newspaper New Straits Times.

“We are investigating based on the four areas of focus ( personal and psychological problems, sabotage and hijacking),” Khalid said at a press conference after opening the Royal Malaysian Police Quality and Innovation Seminar 2014.

He said until now there had been about 170 statements recorded from family members of the passengers and crew on board the missing jetliner.

Khalid said the investigators did have some clues of what happened, but they would not reveal anything as the investigation was ongoing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

CANBERRA    2014-04-02   09:55:19

>>  Australian ocean scientists draw on int’l help in Malaysian airliner search

The head of the Australian oceanography task force helping to find Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 on Wednesday outlined the methods and difficulties of the search in the southern Indian Ocean.

Scientists in the task force were using a range of methods to define possible search locations along the arc of the airliner’s estimated flight path, Dr. David Griffin told Xinhua in a phone interview.

These included backtracking of ocean currents to determine a source site of any debris that might be picked up and forward tracking from possible crash sites to identify search areas.

However, backtracking debris to where it might have come from on March 8, when the aircraft was lost, was becoming increasingly difficult.

Any analysis would depend on exactly where any items were found and how many there were, said Griffin, of the Australian government’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization Marine and Atmosphere Research center, based in the Tasmanian capital of Hobart.

“At this point when we are now so long after March 8 and we haven’t found any wreckage yet, the prognosis for backtracking any wreckage found to a crash site is not particularly good,” he said.

However, by combining the task force’s analysis with data from the Inmarsat satellite network, which had helped calculate the possible flight path, the scientists could identify “feasible” possible search areas.

“We have that arc on the Earth’s surface from the Inmarsat network that gives you a line, rather than a whole area of possible places, and so it’s a matter of working along that line a segment at a time and then going with a hypothesis — if it was at this point along that line, what area of ocean needs to be searched?” said Griffin.

Swirling eddies — a feature of the southern Indian Ocean — could help to gather debris through complex patterns of “vertical circulation” and narrow the search areas.

“By looking at where the eddies are and what we know about their impact on aggregation, we hope to actually find regions within the larger region that are higher priority for searching because of the possibility of aggregation,” he said.

“They’re moving on a daily basis and we monitor those from space using satellites that measure sea level. One of those is a Chinese satellite and we’re using the data from that Chinese satellite.”

The Australian task force was receiving help from an international network known as GODAE (Global Ocean Data Assimilation Experiment) OceanView to develop the capabilities to monitor the ocean currents and eddies.

“We don’t have our own satellites so Australia depends on Europe and America and China for access to satellite data and the methods for doing the ocean modeling are shared internationally,” said Griffin.

 

 

 

 

 

PERTH, Australia   2014-04-02  07:33:25

>>  Malaysian PM to visit Perth as MH370 search

moves closer to western Australian coast

By Deng Yushan

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is scheduled to visit this western Australian port city on Wednesday for the ongoing search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

Meanwhile, the designated search area for Wednesday is closer to the western Australian coast, now about 1,490 km northwest of Perth, according to the latest information from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA).

In parallel, the intensity of the hunt keeps increasing. British Ministry of Defense (MoD) said Tuesday that Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless has arrived in the southern Indian Ocean to help with the search.

With its advanced underwater search capability, HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar Class submarine, will be able to contribute to the efforts to locate the missing plane, the MoD said.

The MoD added that, HMS Echo, a British Royal Navy coastal survey ship, is also due to join the hunt soon for the ill-fated Boeing 777 jetliner, which disappeared early March 8 while carrying 239 people — including 154 Chinese passengers — from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

Seven Chinese vessels and two Chinese IL-76 planes are involved in the search west of Perth, and a three-ship Chinese naval flotilla previously deployed in the Gulf of Aden for escort missions has teamed up with a Chinese patrol vessel to search for the missing plane south of Australia’s Christmas Island.

Despite massive multinational efforts, no hard evidence has so far been acquired about the whereabouts of MH370.

 

 

 

 

 

 

LONDON   2014-04-02   03:09:30

>>   British royal navy submarine joins search for MH370

By Zhang Jianhua

British Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless has arrived in the southern Indian Ocean to help with the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 that went missing on March 8, British Ministry of Defense (MoD) announce Tuesday.

With its advanced underwater search capability, HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar Class submarine, will be able to contribute to the attempts to locate the missing plane, the MoD said.

Britain has remained in close touch with the Malaysian authorities since the missing of the aircraft and is providing a range of support, the ministry said.

Meanwhile, HMS Echo, a British Royal Navy coastal survey ship, is also due to arrive in the southern Indian Ocean to help with the search for the transponder on the black box, according to the MoD

The vessel is expected to “play an important role” in the search for debris on the sea’s surface and its advanced environmental assessment capability will help optimize search operations, the MoD said.

The British government is to provide technical assistance and specialist capabilities from across the Ministry of Defense, the Hydrographic Office, Department for Transport and the Met Office, it said.

Four British Royal Air Force personnel on secondment to the Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal New Zealand Air Force are also “actively involved” in maritime search operations, according to the ministry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ABOARD JINGGANGSHAN   2014-04-02 02:46:35

>>  Urgent: Chinese ships retrieve beacon in MH370 search

By Deng Yushan

Two Chinese ships in search of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean retrieved a beacon late Tuesday, said an embedded Xinhua reporter.

The crews aboard Jinggangshan and Donghaijiu 101 told Xinhua that the beacon might be cast by aircraft involved in the hunt for the ill-fated Boeing 777 jetliner but confirmation was needed.

The two ships are among the seven Chinese vessels currently scouring waters some 2,000 kilometers west of the western Australian port city of Perth. Two Chinese IL-76 planes are also assisting the undertaking.

Meanwhile, a three-ship Chinese naval flotilla previously deployed in the Gulf of Aden for escort missions teamed up with Chinese patrol vessel Haixun 31 on Tuesday to search for the missing plane south of Australia’s Christmas Island.

Despite massive multinational efforts, no hard evidence has so far been acquired about the whereabouts of MH370, which disappeared early March 8 while carrying 239 people — including 154 Chinese passengers — from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

LONDON   2014-04-02   02:21:56

>>  Urgent: British submarine joins MH370 hunt

By Deng Yushan

British Trafalgar class submarine HMS Tireless has arrived in the southern Indian Ocean to join the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, local media reported Tuesday quoting the Ministry of Defence.

Another British vessel, coastal survey ship HMS Echo, is to take part in the mission soon, according to the reports.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ABOARD JINGGANGSHAN   2014-04-02   02:12:15

>>  Urgent: Chinese ships retrieve beacon in MH370 search

By Deng Yushan

Two Chinese ships in search of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean retrieved a beacon late Tuesday, said an embedded Xinhua reporter.

It is yet to be confirmed whether the beacon was cast by aircraft involved in the hunt for the ill-fated Boeing 777 jetliner.

 

 

 

 

 

 

CANBERRA   2014-04-02   09:55:19

>>  Australian ocean scientists draw on int’l help in Malaysian airliner search

The head of the Australian oceanography task force helping to find Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 on Wednesday outlined the methods and difficulties of the search in the southern Indian Ocean.

Scientists in the task force were using a range of methods to define possible search locations along the arc of the airliner’s estimated flight path, Dr. David Griffin told Xinhua in a phone interview.

These included backtracking of ocean currents to determine a source site of any debris that might be picked up and forward tracking from possible crash sites to identify search areas.

However, backtracking debris to where it might have come from on March 8, when the aircraft was lost, was becoming increasingly difficult.

Any analysis would depend on exactly where any items were found and how many there were, said Griffin, of the Australian government’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization Marine and Atmosphere Research center, based in the Tasmanian capital of Hobart.

“At this point when we are now so long after March 8 and we haven’t found any wreckage yet, the prognosis for backtracking any wreckage found to a crash site is not particularly good,” he said.

However, by combining the task force’s analysis with data from the Inmarsat satellite network, which had helped calculate the possible flight path, the scientists could identify “feasible” possible search areas.

“We have that arc on the Earth’s surface from the Inmarsat network that gives you a line, rather than a whole area of possible places, and so it’s a matter of working along that line a segment at a time and then going with a hypothesis — if it was at this point along that line, what area of ocean needs to be searched?” said Griffin.

Swirling eddies — a feature of the southern Indian Ocean — could help to gather debris through complex patterns of “vertical circulation” and narrow the search areas.

“By looking at where the eddies are and what we know about their impact on aggregation, we hope to actually find regions within the larger region that are higher priority for searching because of the possibility of aggregation,” he said.

“They’re moving on a daily basis and we monitor those from space using satellites that measure sea level. One of those is a Chinese satellite and we’re using the data from that Chinese satellite.”

The Australian task force was receiving help from an international network known as GODAE (Global Ocean Data Assimilation Experiment) OceanView to develop the capabilities to monitor the ocean currents and eddies.

“We don’t have our own satellites so Australia depends on Europe and America and China for access to satellite data and the methods for doing the ocean modeling are shared internationally,” said Griffin.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PERTH, Australia   2014-04-02   07:33:25

>>  Malaysian PM to visit Perth as MH370 search

moves closer to western Australian coast

By Deng Yushan

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is scheduled to visit this western Australian port city on Wednesday for the ongoing search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

Meanwhile, the designated search area for Wednesday is closer to the western Australian coast, now about 1,490 km northwest of Perth, according to the latest information from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA).

In parallel, the intensity of the hunt keeps increasing. British Ministry of Defense (MoD) said Tuesday that Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless has arrived in the southern Indian Ocean to help with the search.

With its advanced underwater search capability, HMS Tireless, a Trafalgar Class submarine, will be able to contribute to the efforts to locate the missing plane, the MoD said.

The MoD added that, HMS Echo, a British Royal Navy coastal survey ship, is also due to join the hunt soon for the ill-fated Boeing 777 jetliner, which disappeared early March 8 while carrying 239 people — including 154 Chinese passengers — from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

Seven Chinese vessels and two Chinese IL-76 planes are involved in the search west of Perth, and a three-ship Chinese naval flotilla previously deployed in the Gulf of Aden for escort missions has teamed up with a Chinese patrol vessel to search for the missing plane south of Australia’s Christmas Island.

Despite massive multinational efforts, no hard evidence has so far been acquired about the whereabouts of MH370.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ABOARD JINGGANGSHAN   2014-04-02   02:46:35

>>  Urgent: Chinese ships retrieve beacon in MH370 search

By Deng Yushan

Two Chinese ships in search of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean retrieved a beacon late Tuesday, said an embedded Xinhua reporter.

The crews aboard Jinggangshan and Donghaijiu 101 told Xinhua that the beacon might be cast by aircraft involved in the hunt for the ill-fated Boeing 777 jetliner but confirmation was needed.

The two ships are among the seven Chinese vessels currently scouring waters some 2,000 kilometers west of the western Australian port city of Perth. Two Chinese IL-76 planes are also assisting the undertaking.

Meanwhile, a three-ship Chinese naval flotilla previously deployed in the Gulf of Aden for escort missions teamed up with Chinese patrol vessel Haixun 31 on Tuesday to search for the missing plane south of Australia’s Christmas Island.

Despite massive multinational efforts, no hard evidence has so far been acquired about the whereabouts of MH370, which disappeared early March 8 while carrying 239 people — including 154 Chinese passengers — from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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