You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

PM says plane search not open-ended

Canberra Times logo Canberra Times 25/03/2014 Canberra Times
The Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott makes a speech during the Governor General's farewell reception at Parliament House. © Mark Nolan/Getty Images The Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott makes a speech during the Governor General's farewell reception at Parliament House.

The search for the missing Malaysian airliner isn't open-ended but Australia won't lightly abandon efforts to locate the wreckage, Prime Minister Tony Abbott says.

He says Australia is throwing everything it can at the search, which is expected to resume on Wednesday after a 24-hour delay due to bad weather in the southern Indian Ocean.

Up to 12 aircraft are expected in the search area about 2500km southwest of Perth, along with Chinese navy and civilian ships and HMAS Success.

Four RAAF AP-3C Orion aircraft will be involved and another Australian navy vessel will soon join Success, Mr Abbott said.

As well, equipment to recover the aircraft's black box flight recorder is on the way from the United States.

Mr Abbott said there was a lot of debris in the area and Australia would keep searching until there was no hope of finding anything.

"We are just going to keep on looking because we owe it to people to do everything we can to resolve this riddle," he told the Nine Network.

"It is not absolutely open-ended but it is not something we will lightly abandon."

Mr Abbott said he spoke to Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and pledged Australia's ongoing help.

"We owe it to the families. We owe it to an anxious world to do everything we can to finally locate some wreckage and to do whatever we can to solve the riddle of this extraordinarily ill-fated flight," he said.

Mr Abbott said it wasn't known how many relatives of those aboard the doomed aircraft would come to Australia to be closer to the search.

But those who made the trip would pay no visa fees at this "unspeakable time".

"If they want to come to Australia, we will make them welcome and we will do everything we can to assist," he said.

Mr Najib announced late on Monday that fresh analysis of satellite tracking data showed Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which went missing on March 8 en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people aboard, had crashed in the southern Indian Ocean.

Most of the passengers were from China.

There were also six Australians on board.

More From Canberra Times

Canberra Times
Canberra Times
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon