SYDNEY, March 31. /ITAR-TASS/. The search in the Indian Ocean for the missing Malaysian Boeing 777-200 passenger plane is not limited in time, however, it is not excluded that at some point the efforts would be scaled back, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said on Monday at Perth where planes that are involved in the international search operation are based.
“This is an extraordinarily difficult exercise .... we are searching a vast area of ocean, and we are working on quite limited information,” Abbott said, adding that the efforts must be continued for the sake of the grieving families of 239 people that were on board the airliner. “If this mystery is solvable, we will solve it,” he said.
Abbott said he was not putting a time limit on the search. “We owe it to everyone to do whatever we reasonably can, and we can keep searching for quite some time to come ... and, as I said, the intensity of our search and the magnitude of operations is increasing, not decreasing.”
The operation continues in the area located at about 1,800 kilometers from Australia’s west coast. Today it involves 10 planes - of Australia, China, Malaysia, New Zealand, the United States, South Korea and Japan. There are also 10 vessels, including seven Chinese, in the area. In recent days, seamen have found debris that had earlier been spotted from the air, but they had nothing to do with the missing airliner.
The plane of Malaysia Airlines was performing a flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 7. It carried 227 passengers and 12 crewmembers. Radio communication with the plane was disrupted in two hours after its takeoff from the Malaysian capital.