2014-03-18 02:06:08 | Al Muslim News


Prime Minister of Malaysia, Najib Tun Razak, telephoned Prime Minister Hon Tony Abbott to update the Australian Government on the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. In light of developments in the investigation he requested that Australia assume responsibility for coordinating that part of the search effort that is now focusing on the southern Indian Ocean. Prime Minister Hon Tony Abbott told Malaysian Prime Minister that Australia stands with Malaysia at this very difficult time and would be pleased to take on this additional responsibility. The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) will take the lead in coordinating the search effort in the southern Indian Ocean through its Rescue Coordination Centre – Australia, supported by the Australian Defence Force and other contributing agencies. The two RAAF AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft which since last week have been assisting the search effort off the coast of Malaysia are being re-tasked to search in the southern Indian Ocean. One Orion commenced searching the Indian Ocean to the north and west of the Cocos Islands yesterday. The next sweep will take place this evening as an AP-3C Orion transits from the Cocos Islands to RAAF Base Pearce in Western Australia. Prime Minister Hon Tony Abbott also informed Prime Minister Najib that Australia would make additional maritime surveillance aircraft available to extend the effort to locate MH370. Defence has commenced planning to provide two additional AP‑3C Orions within the next 24 hours..

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