AirAsia flight QZ8501: Ng Eng Hen thanks servicemen for aiding rescue efforts over the New Year

(Fourth from right) Rear Admiral Jackson Chia (Chief of Staff, Naval Staff) speaks to navy personnel of MV Swift Rescue before the ship departs. MV Swift Rescue is the fourth ship to be sent by Singapore to help in the search for QZ8501 departs from
(Fourth from right) Rear Admiral Jackson Chia (Chief of Staff, Naval Staff) speaks to navy personnel of MV Swift Rescue before the ship departs. MV Swift Rescue is the fourth ship to be sent by Singapore to help in the search for QZ8501 departs from Changi Naval Base on Dec 30, 2014. -- ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

SINGAPORE - Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen on Wednesday evening paid tribute to servicemen working over the holiday period to help in the recovery efforts of AirAsia flight QZ8501.

In a Facebook post just hours before the New Year, Dr Ng wrote: "I want to thank all the servicemen and women who are working over the New Year holiday to help our neighbour in need. While your families will miss you, I know that they must be proud and supportive of your efforts."

 

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Dr Ng added that Indonesia had accepted Singapore's offer of the Mine Counter Measure Vessel (MCMV) and REMUS Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV).

The MCMV departed from Tuas Naval Base on Wednesday afternoon, while the AUV will be transported via a C-130 plane, then a Super Puma helicopter, to the search area on Thursday.

Five naval vessels have so far been deployed by Singapore to help Indonesia with their recovery operations.

The Indonesia AirAsia Airbus 320-200 with 162 crew and passengers on board, disappeared off radar screens on Sunday morning, on a flight from Surabaya to Singapore.

On Tuesday, Indonesian authorities located the first debris and bodies.

mklee@sph.com.sg

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