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MH370: Malaysia wants objects verified

Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia said on Thursday that two objects spotted in the Indian Ocean gave reason for hope of a resolution to its missing plane crisis, but stressed the need to verify the claim.

“Every lead is a hope,” Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, where he is overseeing an international search effort.

Malaysia's acting transport minister, Hishammuddin Hussein (left), speaks during a news conference about Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on March 18, 2014. Malaysia's foreign minister, Anifah Aman, is also seen. Picture: Edgar Su. Credit: Reuters

“We have been very consistent. We want to verify, we want to corroborate,” he said.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott told Parliament that “new and credible information” based on satellite imagery had come to light, and that four long-range surveillance planes were being diverted to look into the find in the southern Indian Ocean.

Hishammuddin said Abbott had called his Malaysian counterpart, Najib Razak, to discuss the latest development.

“This time I just hope that it is a positive development,” Hishammuddin said.

The search has been dogged by previous false leads, including Chinese satellite images of suspected debris published earlier which turned out to be a red herring.

Hishammuddin warned it may take some time before the Australian find could be verified.

“Aircraft and vessels are going there, you know how huge the area is,” he said. - Sapa-AFP

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