SEPANG: The search and recovery of the doomed Flight MH17 has extended to a lake near the crash site with divers from Holland and Australia looking into the possibility that remains of the victims may have fallen there.
Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who spent nearly a week in Ukraine to take a first-hand look at how the Malaysian investigation team was doing, said the lake search was launched at 12.30pm Malaysian time yesterday.
“I am sorry I am not able to tell how big the lake is or its name, but it is located in the vicinity of the crash site,” he said.
“There are still 62 bodies yet to be accounted for, so the teams decided to also search the lake.
“I have not yet received any update on the effort,” he said at the KL International Airport here upon arriving from Ukraine yesterday.
He said the international search teams decided to send divers as there was a possibility that remains of the victims could be in the lake.
Ahmad Zahid said he had been told that there were at least 10 divers searching the lake.
“Our diver from VAT69 would be joining them soon,” he added.
Ahmad Zahid said the search had expanded from four to six zones, adding that the Malaysian teams were concentrating on two zones.
On whether the bodies of all the 43 Malaysians who perished in the tragedy would be brought home in one trip or in stages, he said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak would decide that.
“We are waiting for a directive from the Prime Minister.
“The Foreign Ministry and Defence Ministry are coordinating the process,” Ahmad Zahid said.