Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak announced on Wednesday that the recently recovered piece of plane wreckage does in fact belong to missing Malaysian Airlines MH370. The airplane fragment is the first definitive physical clue to one of the greatest mysteries in the history of aviation. The fragment — a 6-foot-long, barnacle-encrusted wing flap — was discovered on July 29 by a crew cleaning the beach on Reunion Island, a French territory in the Indian Ocean off the southern tip of Africa. Investigators previously confirmed it belonged to a Boeing 777 and Flight 370 was the only plane of that model missing in the world.
The confirmation on Wednesday provided the first tangible evidence of what became of the plane after it disappeared from radar on March 8, 2014, with 227 passengers and 12 crew on board. Investigators in France on Wednesday began examining the wing flap to determine if it was part of the missing plane. The flaperon was found on a beach in the town of Saint Andre one week ago. Malaysia’s Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai, citing French authorities and Boeing, confirmed Sunday that the flaperon was from a Boeing 777.
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