HCM CITY — Two Vietnamese vessels HQ 954 and HQ 637 from the Naval Zone 5 based in the southern province of Kien Giang left Phu Quoc Island at 3:30pm on March 8 to search for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet.
The plane likely descended in a water area bordering with Malaysia , over 150 nautical miles to the south of Tho Chu Island, Phu Quoc district.
The vessels are expected to arrive at the area in the next 15 hours.
Earlier on 2:20pm, a vessel coded 2001 from the naval police zone 4 departed from Phu Quoc. It is scheduled to arrive at the scene at 7:00pm the same day for search.
Meanwhile, six planes from three countries have joined the search and rescue mission in the area 250km southwest of Vietnam's Ca Mau cape, according to Director of the Civil Aviation Authority Lai Xuan Thanh.
They include three from Malaysia , two from Vietnam and one from Singapore .
The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 took off from Malaysia 's capital Kuala Lumpur and was scheduled to land in Beijing , China at 6:30 on March 8 (local time).
Malaysia Airlines General Director Ahmad Jauhari Yahya told a press conference on March 8 that it lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control at 02:40 (local time) on March 8.
It was reported that at least 14 nationalities were among the 227 passengers and 12 crew members on board the missing plane. — VNA/VNS