As it happened: Malaysia plane lost in ocean - PM

Key points

  • Malaysia says it must be assumed plane crashed in southern Indian Ocean with no survivors
  • A multinational search is continuing in the area to try to recover debris from flight MH370
  • Relatives of those on board were informed of conclusion via text message
  • Malaysian PM's statement based on data from UK satellite firm Inmarsat
  • Ten planes scoured the southern Indian Ocean area on Monday for debris and have now left
  • The Kuala Lumpur-Beijing airliner with 239 people on board disappeared on 8 March (all times GMT)

Live text


  • Sarah Fowler 
  • Sitala Peek 
  • Mohamed Madi 
  • Natalie Miller 
  • Amee Enriquez 
  • Helier Cheung 

Last updated 24 March 2014


Welcome to our live page on the continuing international search in the southern Indian Ocean for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.


On Monday, planes from China and Japan joined the search alongside six other aircraft.


A Chinese plane hunting for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane has spotted "suspicious" objects, China's state-run Xinhua news agency says.


A Xinhua correspondent said "searchers saw two relatively big floating objects with many white smaller ones scattered within a radius of several kilometres".


A Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force Lockheed P-3C Orion aircraft crew member wipes the windshield of the aircraft before it takes off from RAAF Base Pearce to search for the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370, in Bullsbrook near Perth, 24 March 2014

This P-3C Orion aircraft from Japan is one of several planes taking part in the search, departing from a base in the Australian city of Perth. Our main story can be read here.


China's state broadcaster CCTV has shown live pictures of the Chinese planes returning to Perth. A presenter said the broadcaster's journalists were on one of the planes, raising the possibility of some pictures emerging of what the Chinese had seen.


The ocean search area of about 68,500 sq km (26,000 sq miles) is around 2,500km (1,550 miles) south-west of Australian city Perth.


These are not the first objects spotted in the search area - both the Australians and the Chinese have taken satellite images of possible debris. Search efforts have focused on finding the debris to see if it if linked to the missing plane.


In a statement, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said it "was advised about the reported objects sighted by a Chinese aircraft". It added: "The reported objects are within today's search area and attempts will be made to relocate them."


The US Pacific Command said on Monday that it was moving a black box locator to the region "as a precautionary measure in case a debris field is located". The equipment has a "highly sensitive listening capability" and is able to detect pings from the black box while being towed behind a ship.