As it happened: Malaysia missing flight MH370 briefing

Key points

  • China begins searching its territory for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370
  • The plane went missing on 8 March with 239 people on board
  • Malaysian officials are trying to narrow the search area, which now covers about 2.24m square nautical miles (7.68m sq km)
  • Search efforts are focusing on two vast air corridors north and south of the plane's last known location. Malaysia says the plane was intentionally diverted
  • Relatives of the missing Chinese passengers threaten to start a hunger strike as they demand more information
  • All times GMT

Live text

Reporting:

  • Victoria Park 
  • Jasmine Coleman 
  • Nina Lamparski 
  • Suzanne Leigh 

STANDARD 09:25

Welcome to our live coverage as Malaysian authorities are shortly expected to hold a news conference about missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

STANDARD 09:25

The Malaysian government believes the plane was intentionally diverted and could have flown on either a northern or southern arc from its last known position in the Malacca Straits.

STANDARD 09:26

 Indonesian Air Force officer with ruler and map plots a flight path

Search efforts are focused on two corridors - one stretching from the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to northern Thailand, and another from Indonesia to the Indian Ocean. Click here to find out more about how operations are being carried out.

TWEET

CCTV News

tweets: Chinese ambassador to Malaysia: China has begun searching within its territory of the northern corridor. #MH370

STANDARD 09:33

Investigators are looking into the possibility that the aircraft's crew - or other individuals on the plane - were involved in its disappearance. China says that based on background checks, there is no evidence to suggest that the 153 mainland Chinese passengers on the plane were involved in hijacking or launching a terror attack.

STANDARD 09:34

The Malaysian minister of transport opens the press conference, saying that the search has taken on "a new international dimension".

STANDARD 09:38

The minister says that the search is now focused on four main points:

  1. Gathering information from satellite surveillance
  2. Analysing radar information
  3. Additional deployments of air and surface teams
  4. Increase the number of technical experts