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Last updateTue, 15 Aug 2017 10pm

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MH370 search: Debris found on Reunion being sent to France

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Debris found on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion is to be transported to France to find out whether it is from the missing airliner MH370, Malaysia's prime minister has said.

Initial reports suggest the two-metre long wreckage is very likely to be from a Boeing 777, Najib Razak said.

Malaysia Airlines' flight MH370 is the only Boeing 777 to have disappeared over an ocean.

There were 239 people on board when the plane went missing in March 2014.

Mr Najib said French authorities were taking the debris to the southern French city of Toulouse - the site of the nearest office of the French body responsible for air accident investigations (the BEA) - to verify it as quickly as possible.

A Malaysian team of investigators and representatives from the government and the airline was travelling to Toulouse, and a second team to the site of the find on Reunion, he said.

Najib Razak said the location was "consistent with the drift analysis provided to the Malaysian investigation team".

"As soon as we have more information or any verification we will make it public...

"I promise the families of those lost that whatever happens, we will not give up."

Aviation experts who have studied photos of the debris found on Reunion on Wednesday say it does resemble a flaperon - a moving part of the wing surface - from a Boeing 777.

On Thursday, a municipal employee found what appeared to be a very badly damaged suitcase on the Reunion coast, according to local media (in French).

The item was found at Saint-Andre, the same location as the earlier debris.

Reunion, a French overseas department, is about 600km (370 miles) east of Madagascar.

The search efforts for MH370, led by Australia, are focused on a broad expanse of the southern Indian Ocean - around 4,000km to the east of Reunion.


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