KUALA LUMPUR: The office of Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss has denied that the country together with Malaysia and China had plans to abandon the search for missing Malaysia Airlines MH370.
In a statement on Monday (Mar 2), his spokesman said the Australian government is cautiously optimistic about finding the Boeing 777 aircraft, The Australian reported.
“Discussion are not under way to call off the search. Discussions are ongoing about the search,” the spokesman was quoted as saying by the daily. The spokesman said that with more than 40 per cent of the 60,000-square-kilometre priority area searched so far, the government remained cautiously optimistic about finding the plane.
“If, however, the plane is not found at the completion of the search, expected around May 2015, then discussions will be had between Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia and potentially others on the next steps,” the spokesman was quoted as saying.
No trace has been found of the aircraft, which disappeared a year ago this week carrying 239 passengers and crew, in what has become one of the greatest mysteries in aviation history.
MH370 vanished from radar screens shortly after taking off from Kuala Lumpur, bound for Beijing, early on Mar 8. Investigators believe it was flown thousands of miles off course before eventually crashing into the Indian Ocean.