Published: Sun, January 07, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Malaysia to resume search for missing flight MH370 in southern Indian Ocean

Malaysia to resume search for missing flight MH370 in southern Indian Ocean

Malaysia has agreed to allow a U.S. exploration firm to resume the hunt for flight MH370, the transport minister said, a year after the search was suspended.

The Malaysia Airlines jet disappeared in March 2014 with 239 people - mostly from China - on board en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, triggering one of the world's greatest aviation mysteries.

The minister said, "It is our duty to look for answers and the plane".

The governments of Malaysia, China and Australia called off the 1,046-day official search on January 17 previous year. But a report from the Australian Transport Safety Board released later in the year pointed to a new search area where the plane could be found. Ocean Infinity did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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The source, who declined to be identified, said that the firm had made a decision to send the Seabed Constructor, a Norwegian research vessel, to the southern Indian Ocean so that it was ready to start searching in a window of good weather expected in January and February. Ocean Infinity was taking advantage of favorable weather to move the vessel toward "the vicinity of the possible search zone", the company said in a statement.

Several pieces of aircraft debris have been collected from Indian Ocean islands and along Africa's east coast, with at least three being confirmed as being from the missing plane. The ship has unmanned submarines that can descend deep into the ocean.

Despite other methods such as studying satellite imagery and investigating ocean drifts after debris from the plane washed ashore on islands in the eastern Indian Ocean and the east coast of Africa, the 1,046-day search was called off on January 17, 2017. The Minister of Transport, Liow Tiong Lai, said that the contract will be signed next week and will only have an economic cost if it concludes successfully, as agreed between both sides in October.

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