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Missing Malaysia plane 'not in ping area'

Missing Malaysia plane 'not in ping area'
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Australian officials say the missing Malaysia Airlines plane is not in the area they had identified.

Last month acoustic pings thought to be from the plane’s black boxes were heard near the zone where satellite data put its last location, some 1,600 km off Australia’s northwest coast.

But a thorough scan of the area around the pings has failed to find any sign of the Beijing-bound Boeing which disappeared shortly after taking off from Kuala Lumpur on March 8.

This is despite the most extensive and expensive search effort in aviation history.

Investigators say what little evidence they have to work with suggests the Boeing 777 was deliberately diverted thousands of kilometres from its scheduled route.

The pings may have come from a rescue ship according to reported comments from one US navy source although another said these remarks were “speculative and premature”.

For relatives of the 239 passengers and crew, the mystery and
agony continues.

Complicating the picture further, Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss says officials remain confident that the missing jet is somewhere in the southern Indian Ocean.