The Australian prime minister has made a grim prediction that it is “highly unlikely” debris from missing flight MH370 will be found on the ocean surface a Sky news source has said.
Tony Abbott, while Speaking from the Australian capital Canberra, said the hunt for the Malaysia Airlines flight will now focus on underwater search operations.
“I am now required to say to you that it is highly unlikely at this stage that we will find any aircraft debris on the ocean surface,” Mr Abbott said.
He added the US Navy’s Bluefin-21 underwater vehicle has finished scouring the initial search area off Australia’s western coast and has not yet found anything.
“I want the families to know, I want the world to know, that Australia will not shirk its responsibilities in this area,” he said.
“We will do everything we humanly can … to solve this mystery.
“We will not let people down and while the search will be moving to a new phase in coming weeks, it certainly is not ending.”
Radar and satellite data show the jet, which was carrying 239 passengers and crew when it disappeared mid-way through a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, veered off course on March 8 for unknown reasons.
Analysis suggests it would have run out of fuel in a remote section of the Indian Ocean.