Singapore sends submarine rescue vessel, aircaft to search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370

·Nurul Azliah Aripin

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) has sent more aircraft and vessels to assist Malaysia in efforts to find the missing Beijing-bound Malaysia Airlines plane that was carrying 239 people.

In a statement Sunday, the Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said that a submarine support and rescue vessel with divers onboard has been sent.

Also, two additional C-130 aircraft, a Formidable-class frigate (RSS Steadfast) with a Sikorsky S-70B naval helicopter onboard  and a Missile Corvette (RSS Vigour) have been deployed.

The first Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) C-130 deployed Saturday returned to Singapore Saturday night, according to the ministry.

The deployment comes after Minister for Defence Ng Eng Hen told Channel NewsAsia Saturday night that he offered assistance to his Malaysian counterpart.

“We have a vessel which is equipped to perform underwater search and assist in the search and locate operations. It also has divers on the vessel,” Ng said, adding that Malaysia Defence Minister Hishamuddin accepted the offer.

The defence minister also said that both the Singaporean and Malaysian Chiefs of Navy are coordinating with each other.

Ng said when he first heard the news of the missing MAS MH370 plane, Mindef immediately set in plans to assist Malaysia in the efforts to find the aircraft.

The search for the Malaysia Airline Boeing B77-200 aircraft continues hours after news broke that it dropped out of the radar very early Saturday morning while it had just entered Vietnam airspace.

Vietnam and Beijing have also deployed their vessels to search for the missing plane.

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