The probability of finding missing Malaysian Airways flight 370 has dropped, according to the Australian search chief Angus Houston.
He said the hunt off Western Australia could take between eight months to a year.
Malaysia’s acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said he would travel to Canberra to meet officials from Australia and China to co-ordinate the next phase of the search operation.
“I would like to take this opportunity also to announce that Sunday I will be going to Canberra and there there will be a tripartite or a trilateral discussion with China, in which case we hope that the approach forward with regards to the deployment of assets, engagement with the families and the expert and technical advice that comes from all over the world,” said Hussein.
Meanwhile, the airline is going to close the family support centres where family members of missing passengers have gathered for weeks.
It’s urged relatives still in Beijing and Kuala Lumpur to check out of their hotels and return home to wait for news.
Many don’t want to leave.
“We want to stay here because we don’t believe that Malaysia Airlines could provide a platform to communicate. Every time, they cannot send, even when something big happened, they cannot send the message to all of the next of kins. Some of the relatives may be ignored,” said Steve Wang, a representative of families of missing passengers.
Relatives are desperate for any new information that brings them closer to finding out what happened to their loved ones.
The fate of flight 370 remains a mystery. That’s despite the biggest search in commercial aviation history.