Hagel: Search for jetliner is unprecedented

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel told his Malaysian counterpart Monday night that the U.S. “remains fully committed” to working with Malaysian authorities to find a missing jetliner.

The Pentagon said Hagel told Minister of Defense Hishammuddin Tun Hussein that the U.S. Navy “has retasked reconnaissance aircraft to search the ‘southern corridor’ in the Indian Ocean.”

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Hagel said the search mission is, in many ways, unprecedented, the Pentagon said.

The Pentagon said the two leaders will meet at the upcoming US-ASEAN Defense Forum in Honolulu, where discussions are expected to include humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

On Monday, Malaysia Airlines officials said Flight 370 was “fully serviced” and “fit to fly.”

“Malaysia Airlines has confirmed that the aircraft was subjected to the required maintenance program: the Boeing Maintenance Planning Document,” the company said in a statement. “Checks are done according to this program. The aircraft had been fully serviced and was fit to fly.”

The statement came as investigators have focused on the possibility that the Boeing 777, which has been missing for more than a week, was deliberated diverted by its pilots or crew.

Investigators have confirmed that the plane was flown more than 1,000 off course in a direction that took it over the Indian Ocean.