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MH370: Ministry keen to see how ATSB report can aid search

PUTRAJAYA: The Transport Ministry today acknowledged the release of the First Principles Review Report on Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) today.

The ATSB report revealed that the aircraft is most likely to be located to the north of the current indicative underwater search area.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said while the report presented a thorough analysis of the MH370 search efforts, the ministry remains to be guided as to how this can be used to assist it in identifying the specific location of the aircraft.

“The Australian, Malaysian and Chinese government during the Ministerial Tripartite meeting in July have agreed that consideration will be given in determining next steps should credible new information emerge which can be used to identify the location of the aircraft.

“I wish to reiterate that the aspiration to locate MH370 has not been abandoned and every decision made has and will always be in the spirit of cooperation among the three nations,” Liow said in a statement.

A team of international investigators hunting for missing MH370 concluded that the plane may have crashed in an area farther to the north of search area.

It said it is unlikely to be found in a stretch of the Indian Ocean search crews have been combing for two years.

The conclusion raises the possibility that the search for the Boeing 777 could continue well beyond next month, when crews are expected to finish their deep sea sonar hunt of the current search zone west of Australia.

The latest analysis of the plane’s whereabouts comes in a report from the ATSB which is leading the search for the aircraft.

The report is the result of a November meeting of international and Australian experts who re-examined all the data used to narrow down the search area for the plane, which vanished during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, with 239 people on board.-nst

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