Australia to continue search for MH370

Australia vowed today to continue the search for the missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH 370 despite no signs of a wreck after almost seven weeks.

Meanwhile, bad weather again grounded aircraft and an undersea drone's first full mission neared its end (See: Robotic submarine to search for MH:370).

Australian prime minister Tony Abbott admitted the search strategy might change if seabed scans taken by a US Navy drone failed to reveal any sign of the plane, which vanished on 8 March with 239 people on board.

He said Australia might well re-think the search but would not rest until everything had been done to solve the mystery.

The only way to get to the bottom of this was to keep searching the probable impact zone until something was found or until as thorough a searched as human ingenuity allowed, was conducted.

The Bluefin-21 drone, a key component in the search, after the detection of audio signals or "pings" believed to be from the plane's black box flight recorder, would end its first full mission, possibly today.

Meanwhile, relatives of flight MH370 passengers have denounced the Malaysian government's suggestion that it would consider issuing death certificates for those on board even as there was no proof yet of what happened to the plane.

The statement by the relatives of the passengers, also called for a review of satellite data that Malaysia said pointed to the plane having likely crashed somewhere in the Indian Ocean.

''We, the families of MH370, believe that until they have conclusive proof that the plane crashed with no survivors, they have no right to attempt to settle this case with the issuance of death certificates and final payoffs,'' said the statement by the ''United Families of MH370''.

In a briefing Sunday, a Malaysian official said the government would look into a timetable for issuing death certificates for passengers on the Malaysia Airlines flight, which families would need to seek insurance payments, settle debts and address a range of other issues.