RI deploys warships, airplane to SCS to search for missing aircraft
The Jakarta Post
In response to an emergency request by the Royal Malaysian Navy (TLDM), the Indonesian Navy's (TNI-AL) Western Fleet deployed on Sunday two patrol boats and a maritime patrol aircraft to comb areas in the South China Sea, which is thought to be where the commercial aircraft crashed.
Contact with Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 was lost on Saturday morning, while the plane was traveling en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, China.
The Western Fleet's Maritime Security Task Force (Guspurla) commander, Commodore Harjo Susmoro told The Jakarta Post that he had deployed two PC-40 fast patrol vessels, the KRI Matocra-823 and KRI Krait-827, as well as a maritime patrol aircraft to comb parts of the South China Sea, which borders Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia.
'The two patrol boats and aircraft will patrol the areas as part of a search and rescue (SAR) operation,' he said Sunday.
He added that the SAR operation would continue for as long as it was needed.
'We are doing this because the TLDM made an emergency request to the TNI-AL, which we responded to immediately,' Harjo said.
'It also makes sense as we are currently conducting coordinated Malaysia-Indonesia [Malindo] patrols in the area.'
A number of regencies in Riau Islands province, including Anambas Islands and Natuna regencies, have coastline on the South China Sea. Natuna also shares a maritime border with Cambodia and Vietnam. (nvn)
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