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Experts are analyzing a barnacle-covered airplane wing flap part that may belong to missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. The item washed ashore Reunion Island near Madagascar off the coast of Africa and was found Wednesday. The Boeing 777 plane left Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and vanished on its way to Beijing, China on March 8, 2014 –16 months ago. The plane had 239 people aboard, mostly Chinese. Boeing experts think the wing flaperon came from a Boeing 777, according to national news media reports.
NBC News reports the search continues for more debris possibly linked to MH370 on Reunion Island and that the downed MH370 was intentionally crashed into the Indian Ocean.
Australian officials called the discovery of the flaperon “a significant development” in the search for MH370. the only 777 known missing. CBS News reports the wing part traveled 2,300 miles from the current search zone in the Indian Ocean.
The tenacious, massive, international search led by the Australian government continues to focus on the area where the jetliner is thought to have gone down, along the 7th arc of the southern Indian Ocean. The search area is over 46,000 square miles, up to 5-6 miles deep in a remote, rough area of the Indian Ocean off the western coast of Australia.
Satellite data indicates MH 370 went down in an area that spans 23,000 square feet of the southern Indian Ocean, the BBC reports.
Malaysian government officials officially declared the Malaysia Airlines MH 370 disappearance an accident with no survivors aboard.