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Australia spots two objects in southern corridor: Malaysian official

English.news.cn   2014-03-24 19:51:37

KUALA LUMPUR, March 24 (Xinhua) -- Malaysian Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said here Monday that Australian search aircraft had spotted two objects in the Australian search area, one circular and one rectangular.

"It is possible that the objects could be received within the next few hours, or by tomorrow morning at the best," he said.

A Chinese search plane also reportedly spotted objects earlier Monday in the Australian search area, but not in the vicinity of those identified by the Australian authorities last week, he added.

Three search areas, totaling about 20,000 square nautical miles, had been identified for operations Monday in the southern corridor, he said, adding that Turkmenistan had confirmed no sighting of MH370 on their radar as to the northern corridor.

Malaysia received a further set of images from French satellites this morning, which were taken Sunday and had been relayed to Australia, he said.

Hishammuddin said the high-level team from Malaysia had returned to Kuala Lumpur after meeting with families of passengers in Beijing, who would return to Beijing Tuesday to continue their work.

As to the police investigation related to the missing airliner, he said more than a hundred people had been interviewed, including families of both the pilot and co-pilot.

"As far as the transcript is concerned, the technical committee is considering releasing it and we will keep you informed about the decision," he added.

He also confirmed that the missing plane was carrying wooden pallets. "However, there is as yet no evidence that these are related to the wooden pallets reportedly sighted in the Australian search area," he added.

As to the question on the Boeing plane, Hishammuddin said experts from Boeing and RollsRoyce would be invited to give explanations on this at an appropriate time.

Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, CEO of Malaysia Airlines, said it was the sixth time for the co-pilot of the missing plane to fly a Boeing 777 aircraft when the MH370 vanished on March 8, with Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah to be his examiner.

When asked about the incident that a Malaysia Airlines Flight MH066 from Kuala Lumpur to Incheon, South Korea, was diverted in Hong Kong International Airport early Monday morning because of aircraft generator problem, he referred to it as a technical problem, not a security problem.

Director General of the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said no signal from the ELT (emergency locator transmitter) of the missing plane had been picked up until now.

Editor: chengyang
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