Malaysia Plane: Ocean Floor Images 'Very Clear'

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News,World,Malaysia Airlines Disaster,Indian Ocean,Plane Crashes

Malaysia's defense minister said on Thursday that images retrieved from the underwater vehicle searching for MH370 were "very clear" but had so far returned no evidence of the missing flight. (April 17)

SHOTLIST

AP TELEVISION - AP CLIENTS ONLY

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - April 17, 2014

1. SOUNDBITE (English) Hishamuddin Hussein, Malaysian defence minister and acting transport minister:

"Firstly the visuals that we managed to get from the Bluefin 21 were very clear - not in finding what we were looking for, but what the seabed looks like. And that gives us a bit of relief as (in) the next few days we are going to intensify the deep water search."

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Hishamuddin Hussein, Malaysian Defence Minister and acting Transport Minister:

"We're working very closely with JACC (Joint Agency Coordination Centre) in the possibility of bringing those families (in Beijing) over to Perth if they wish to go there at a time to be specified. This next trip (of the Malaysian official delegation) that is going there (Beijing) is really to brief them on the next phase of our search and this is just to keep them informed, so that there won't be any speculation."

STORYLINE

Malaysia's defense minister said on Thursday that images retrieved from the underwater vehicle searching for MH370 were "very clear" but had so far returned no evidence of the missing flight.

Hishamuddin Hussein, who is also the acting transport minister, told media at a news conference in Kuala Lumpur that the clarity of the Bluefin 21's images "gives us a bit of relief" as deep water searches are planned to continue over the coming days.

The unmanned sub's first two missions were cut short by technical problems and deep water, but it finally managed to complete a full 16-hour scan of the silt-covered seabed far off Australia's west coast on Thursday.

Hussein also said they were working with the Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) on bringing relatives of missing passengers from Beijing to Perth.

He said a Malaysian delegation will be sent to Beijing to brief the families on the next phase of the search to ensure "there won't be any speculation".

Despite weeks of searching, no debris related to the jet has yet been found.

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