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France, Malaysia Have Primary Responsibility To Identify Aircraft Debris – Aussie Deputy PM

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SYDNEY: The French and Malaysian governments have the primary responsibility to identify the aircraft debris found off the east African coast and then also what opportunities there might be to extrapolate from those parts, Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Warren Truss told reporters on Friday, Xinhua news agency reported.

“Of course it is one thing to identify these parts as being from a Boeing 777, and then a second thing that they are a part from the specific aircraft that operated Flight MH370,” Truss who is also Australian Minister for Aviation told reporters on the sidelines of the Boao Forum for Asia conference in Sydney.

The two-meter piece of plane wreckage, suspected to be a wing flap of a Boeing 777, will be transported to France for analysis at the end of this week.

The debris was found on a small island east of Madagascar on Africa’s east coast, thousands of kilometers from where MH370 is believed to have crashed.

The most important part of the discovery, if proven, will be closure for the victims’ families, Truss said.

“It’s important for them to have some positive indication about what may have happened to their loved ones, and we think especially of them now.

“I know it’s a time of uncertainty, it’s a time they’re looking for answers.

“They can certainly be assured that Australia – for our part – will continue to exercise every possible endeavor to find the aircraft and support the current investigations,” the minister said.

Truss said reverse modeling of ocean currents from the part’s location will not contribute much to the present estimates of where the aircraft is located.

“However, the fact that wreckage is on the Reunion Island or [ in] that Madagascar area is consistent with some of the modeling we’ve done in relation to current movements and our predictions as to where our wreckage from 370 could make landfall,” Truss said.

The sighting was consistent with MH370 being located in the current search area in the Indian Ocean off the Western Australia coast, he said.

“We are confident on the basis of continuing refinement, continuing assessment of the satellite data that the search area is correct. We will be continuing to concentrate on the southern end of that identified area.”

The discovery, if proven to be MH370, will eliminate some of the “fanciful theories” that have been around, Truss said.

“It establishes really beyond any doubt that the aircraft is resting in the Indian Ocean and not secretly parked in some hidden place on the land in another part of the world,” Truss said.

Truss said the bag that was also discovered must be taken seriously, however he doubts it has also come from MH370 given it does not have the signs of being in the water for a long period.

Truss said it is too early to speculate on any potential scenario of how the plane has crashed.

–BERNAMA

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