Missing flight MH370: Malaysia PM 'remains hopeful' plane will be found
More than $130M has spent searching area in Indian Ocean
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said Tuesday he is hopeful that missing Flight 370 will still be found as lawmakers observed a moment of silence in Parliament to mark the second anniversary of the plane's disappearance.
Najib said the wing part found on France's Reunion Island last July was evidence the flight tragically ended in the southern Indian Ocean. An ongoing search is expected to be completed later this year and he said Malaysia "remains hopeful" that the plane will be found.
If the search turns up nothing, he said, Malaysia, Australia and China will hold a meeting to determine the way forward.
"The search has been the most challenging in aviation history," Najib said in a statement. "We remain committed to doing everything within our means to solving what is an agonizing mystery for the loved ones of those who were lost."
The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 jet vanished mysteriously with 239 people on board while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014. After two years, it remains one of the biggest mysteries in modern aviation.
The Australian-led search effort has spent more than $130 million looking through a vast area of the Indian Ocean nearly 6.5 kilometres deep. Investigators have said the search will end by June unless fresh clues are found.
"At this time, the team is continuing to work towards finalising its analysis, findings, conclusions and safety recommendations on eight relevant areas associated with the disappearance of flight MH370 based on relevant information," the search team said in a statement.
Families of those on board have appealed to authorities to keep the search alive.
Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said about crews have combed about three-quarters of the 120,000-square-kilometre search zone. He said the government is waiting for verification of two more possible pieces of debris, which were discovered recently in Mozambique and Reunion island.
The statement said a final report will be completed only when the aircraft wreckage is located or the search for the wreckage is terminated.