Prime Minister Tony Abbott has denied he released information about possible debris in the Indian Ocean to early, as aircraft and ships continue to search for the objects, one of which is 24-meters long.
Speaking in Papua New Guinea Abbott said it was important to release all information as quickly as possible to ensure the families of the 239 people — including six Australians — on board Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 were kept informed.
“We owe it to them to give them information as soon as it is at hand,” the prime minister said.
“We have been throwing everything we’ve got at it.
“It could just be a container that’s fallen off a ship — we just don’t know,” Abbott told reporters.
Weather conditions have hampered the search effort. The area, around 2,5000 kilometres from Perth, is so remote aircraft can only remain on station for a few hours before returning to refuel.
A Norwegian-flagged cargo vessel has arrived at the area, and a second commercial ship is expected soon. Australian Navy ship the HMAS Success is expected tomorrow.
The Malaysian Airlines flight seemingly vanished en route to Beijing. Initial investigations looked into the possibility of a catastrophic accident. Efforts have since refocused on the possibility of a hijack attempt.
Investigators have agreed the plane was deviated from its intended flight path by someone with flying experience, who was able to disable several tracking measures.
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