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Still mystery: MH370 report fails to find cause of disappearance

Still mystery: MH370 report fails to find cause of disappearance

And after a joint $200m search operation by Australia, China and Malaysia was ended past year, and a privately-funded underwater search was called off two months ago with no findings, there's a strong possibility the families of those lost will never know what happened to their loved ones in one of the most unprecedented aviation disasters in history.

Despite an worldwide effort to discover why Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 crashed in March 2014, the accident investigation team has concluded in a report (PDF) released Monday that it was "unable to determine the real cause for the disappearance".

The report, prepared by a 19-member worldwide team, reiterated Malaysia's assertion the plane was deliberately diverted and flown for over seven hours after severing communications.

"The answer can only be conclusive if the wreckage is found", Kok Soo Chon, head of the MH370 safety investigation team, told reporters.

"'It is so frustrating as nobody during the briefing can answer our questions we hope someone comes to us and tell us what happened to MH370", she said.

"We can also not exclude the possibility that there's unlawful interference by a third party". But he added that no group has said it hijacked the plane and no ransom demands have been made, compounding the mystery. The government will also conduct a "thorough investigation" and punish those found guilty of any misconduct, he said.

It said both Malaysian air traffic control and their Vietnamese counterparts failed to act properly when the Boeing jet passed from Malaysian to Vietnamese airspace and disappeared from radars.

A total of 239 people boarded the MH370 flight in Kuala Lumpur on March 8, 2014, including its 12 crew members.

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Scattered pieces of debris have washed ashore on beaches in Africa and Indian Ocean islands, indicating a remote stretch of the ocean where the plane probably crashed. An earlier search by Australia, China and Malaysia was fruitless and cost close to US$150 million for a search covering an area of 120,000 sq km past year. And a second, private search by US company Ocean Infinity that finished at the end of May also found no sign of a possible crash site. Investigators believe it crashed somewhere in the Indian Ocean, but they've never come up with an explanation or found the plane's wreckage.

Grace Nathan, a lawyer whose mother was on board, said on Facebook: "Ladies and gentlemen, after 4.5 years of investigation the conclusion.is: 1".

His sister, Sakinab Ahmad Shah said she felt relieved and happy that her brother was cleared of blame.

"But still, it can not end here".

Transport Minister Anthony Loke insisted Monday that "the aspiration to locate MH370 has not been abandoned and we remain ever-hopeful that we will be able to find the answers we seek when the credible evidence becomes available".

The report also said the plane was airworthy and did not have major technical issues, with Kok saying it had been diverted from its intended flight path manually.

Kok said it was "human nature" to speculate on sensational conspiracy theories but that the team relied on facts.

Police didn't find any data that showed a similar route flown by Flight 370 and concluded that there were "no unusual activities other than game-related flight simulations", Kok said.