Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Latest Search News: We're Still Committed to Finding Missing Plane, Say Officials

(PHOTO: REUTERS)Malaysia's acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein answers questions during a news conference about the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 plane at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on March 12, 2014.

Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss told the Australian Associated Press a few days ago that the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH-370 has not been altered or hindered in any way by the recent crash incident of Flight 17 in Ukraine.

MH370 was last seen on March 8 with 239 passengers on board. Aviation and rescue officials affirmed the belief that the plane crashed somewhere near or around the southern Indian Ocean.

However, there has been speculation going on around that Australia's efforts on search for the missing Boeing 777 will be diminished as it will divide its resources to aid in the latest flight accident.

"I want to assure the families of those on MH370 that we have not forgotten the importance of maintaining the search for that aircraft; we are continuing that search uninterrupted," Truss said.

The Deputy Prime Minister also added that the same number of vessels is currently plotting the sea surface where the search will take place. Also, the Australian government is now close to lending an offer for an advanced sonar system that could cover 60,000 square kilometers of search area.

Presently there are two survey ships, Zhu Kezhen and the Australian-contracted Fugro Equator, that are dispatched to carry on the mapping tasks. This process is crucial as it identifies any possible hazards that could affect the scheduled deep-water search. A third vessel, the Malaysian KD Mutiara, has been reported to join in August.

The said underwater search is expected to take as long as one year.

"No resources are being taken away from that search for the MH17 effort; they're different people doing a different kind of job and we remain just as committed to finding that aircraft and giving comfort to those families," Truss said moreover.

"Australia owes it to the families of all of those on board MH370, the travelling public and indeed the wider world to solve this mystery," he added.