Last updated: 09:22 AM ET, Mon August 03 2015

Malaysia Seeks Help In New Hunt For MH370

Airlines & Airports | Malaysia Airlines | Rich Thomaselli | August 03, 2015

Malaysia Seeks Help In New Hunt For MH370

After determining that a new piece of debris found on Reunion Island was not part of an airplane, much less from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, Malaysian officials on Sunday said they would ask small territories near the island to assist in the search for more clues.

This comes five days after a flaperon piece of a Boeing 777 washed up on shore on Wednesday. It has since been flown to France, where investigators are expected to determine this if it belongs to the missing plane that disappeared almost 17 months ago.

The Associated Press reported that Malaysian Director General of Civil Aviation Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the new debris found on Sunday morning was not from an airplane but described the object as a “domestic ladder.”

Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss, whose country has led the search efforts for the vanished jet for more than a year, said Thursday the piece of wreckage is “a very significant development,” and a “major lead,” even though the discovery came at Reunion Island, a French territory 380 miles from the coast of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean and 2,300 miles from where the search team has concentrated its efforts.

The flight disappeared in March of 2014 without a trace. It originally was scheduled from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, made an abrupt U-turn, and hasn’t been heard from since.

Officials believe it crashed into the ocean but not a single verified piece of debris had been found.

Malaysia's transport ministry confirmed to the Associated Press on Sunday that the flaperon is from a 777. Whether it was from the 777 that served as Malaysia Airlines flight 370 remains to be seen.

Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said in a statement Sunday that representatives from Malaysia, the U.S., China, France and Boeing would take part in the verification of the flaperon.

"I urge all parties to allow this crucial investigation process to take its course. I reiterate this is for the sake of the next of kin of the loved ones of MH370 who would be anxiously awaiting news and have suffered much over this time," Liow said, according to the AP. "We will make an announcement once the verification process has been completed."

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