Malaysia, Australia sign MOU on MH370 search

Ground crew work among Malaysia Airlines planes on the runway at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang on July 25, 2014. Malaysia has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Australia to strengthen their collaboration in the sea
Ground crew work among Malaysia Airlines planes on the runway at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang on July 25, 2014. Malaysia has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Australia to strengthen their collaboration in the search of Flight MH370. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

CANBERRA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysia has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Australia to strengthen their collaboration in the search of Flight MH370.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, who is leading the Malaysian delegation here, signed the MOU with Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss on Thursday.

"The signing is to further solidify our collaboration and commitment to find the aircraft," Liow said.

He made it clear that MH370 remains a top priority for the Malaysian Government.

"Continuing with the search remains our focus.

"We have maintained our resolve in searching for the aircraft," he said.

Truss also signed an MOU with Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Hamzah Zainuddin in regards with the next-of-kin of those on board of MH370.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members, left the Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 12.41am on March 8 and disappeared from radar screens about an hour later while over the South China Sea. It was to have arrived in Beijing at 6.30am on the same day.

A multinational search was mounted for the aircraft, first in the South China Sea and then, after it was learned that the plane had veered off course, along two corridors.

The northern corridor stretched from the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to northern Thailand while the southern corridor ran from Indonesia to the southern Indian Ocean.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak then announced on March 24, 17 days after the disappearance of the aircraft, that Flight MH370 "ended in the southern Indian Ocean."