Chinese vessel to search missing Malaysian Jet

China joins search for missing Malaysian jet with sonar-equipped vessel

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Royal New Zealand Air Force search aircraft looking for missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, southern Indian Ocean, March, 2014

China will provide a sonar-equipped vessel and join the search for Malaysian Airlines passenger jet, by the end of February, Australia's Deputy PM Warren Truss said on Friday.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 disappeared with 239 people on board during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in March 2014, leaving a mystery behind.

The Chinese vessel, named Dong Hai Jiu, will be deployed to join search operations in the southern Indian Ocean, where the plane is believed to have gone down.

The research was conducted along a rugged 60,000-sq km (23,000 sq miles) patch of sea floor off the coast of Perth, but nothing was founded.

The underwater search is led by Australia cost A$120 million ($85.5 million).

The presence of Dong Hai Jiu will take to four the number of vessels scouring a search area that has been expanded to 120,000 square km (46,330 square miles) of ocean floor.

China valued its contribution to the search at A$20 million ($14.2 million).

In July 2015, a piece from the missing plane was found in the Indian Ocean. It washed up the French island of Reunion, but no further trace has been found.

On Saturday, a piece of plane wreckage was found at the east coast of southern Thailand, but experts and Thai officials said it was unlikely to belong to MH370.

TRTWorld and agencies