As a search in the southern Indian Ocean for objects that could be debris from the missing Malaysia Airlines jet resumed Friday, Chinese officials said they were prepared to assist Australia in the painstaking operation.
Quoting Chinese officials, the BBC reported that the Chinese icebreaker Xue Long is on standby in Perth, Australia, prepared to assist in search efforts.
It also said Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott contacted Chinese President Xi Jinping to update him on the search for the vanished Flight 370.
"If there is anything down there, we will find it," Abbott was quoted as saying, according to Chinese news agency Xinhua.
The agency added that Xi thanked Abbott for his country's help.
"As long as there is a glimmer of hope, we need to give 100 percent of our efforts," Xinhua news agency reported.
There were 153 Chinese nationals on board the airliner that mysteriously disappeared nearly two weeks ago.
The search area is now focused on a storm-lashed area some 1,500 miles southwest of Perth, after satellite images analyzed Thursday showed two large floating objects that may have come from the Boeing 777 that went missing with 239 people aboard.
— Becky Bratu, with Reuters
First published March 20 2014, 8:24 PM