PERTH, April 14 – The participation of two representatives from the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) in the Joint Agency Coordination Centre’s (JACC) search for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is mainly to facilitate and assist the operation. The two representatives, DCA principal assistant director, Noor Izhar Baharin and Kuala Lumpur Aeronautical Search and Rescue Coordination Centre assistant director, Muhammad Irfan Ahmad Baidove, when contacted by Bernama pointed out that their presence was also as liaison officers for Malaysia. “This is now the process of gathering experts, since I think this could be considered as the first of such scenario that has happened in the world, so every expert has to come and give ideas to solve the problem,” said Noor Izhar. The two who arrived in Perth on Friday, joined the team officially yesterday.
Noor Izhar noted that the team would have a briefing at 9am daily here for the update on the search operation. Asked to elaborate, Noor Izhar, however, declined, saying it would be best that this came from the JACC’s chief coordinator himself. “This (briefing) is needed as we would like to avoid clashes in giving statements, what more to the public,” he said. Asked how long they would be with the JACC, which is based here, Noor Izhar said the duration was still uncertain. On Saturday, acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein when announcing the participation of the two also hinted that Malaysia might also send representatives from three special ministerial committees on Flight MH370, here, to discuss the next course of action on the search and recovery of the aircraft’s black box with the Australian authorities.
Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, left the KL International Airport at 12.41am and disappeared from radar screens about an hour later while over the South China Sea. It was to have arrived in Beijing at 6.30am the same day. A multinational search was mounted for the aircraft, first in the South China Sea and then, after it was learned that the plane had veered off course, along two corridors – the northern corridor stretching from the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to northern Thailand and the southern corridor, from Indonesia to the southern Indian Ocean. Following an unprecedented type of analysis of satellite data, the United Kingdom satellite telecommunications company Inmarsat and the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) concluded that Flight MH370 flew along the southern corridor and that its last position was in the middle of the Indian Ocean, west of Perth. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak then announced on March 24, 17 days after the disappearance of the aircraft, that Flight MH370 “ended in the southern Indian Ocean”.