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Malaysia PM urges aircraft changes to prevent another MH370

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's prime minister has called for international aviation regulators to implement real-time tracking of airliners to prevent a recurrence of the baffling disappearance of flight MH370, while admitting missteps in the first days of the crisis.

Writing in the Wall Street Journal Wednesday, Najib Razak conceded that a chaotic public message and slow start to search and rescue operations in the early days of the plane’s disappearance were a mistake.

But he called for changes that "would make it harder for an aircraft to simply disappear, and easier to find any aircraft that did".

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) held a special meeting earlier this week in Montreal to discuss growing calls for real-time tracking of aircraft by satellite, cloud storage of "black box" data and other innovations.

"One of the most astonishing things about this tragedy is the revelation that an airliner the size of a Boeing 777 can vanish, almost without a trace," Najib wrote.

"In an age of smartphones and mobile Internet, real-time tracking of commercial airplanes is long overdue."

Najib also said regulators should change crucial communications systems to prevent them being manually shut off.

AFP


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