Australian officials say two pieces of debris recently discovered in Mozambique are "highly likely" to have come from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, the AP reports. Transport Minister Darren Chester said in a statement Thursday that an analysis of the parts by an international investigation team shows both pieces are consistent with panels from a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft. "The analysis has concluded the debris is almost certainly from MH370," he said. The dimensions, materials, and construction of both parts conform to those of a 777, and the paint and stenciling on both parts match those used by Malaysia Airlines, Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said in a separate statement.
The discovery of the two pieces bolsters authorities' assertion that the plane went down somewhere in the Indian Ocean. But whether the debris can provide any clues into exactly what happened to the aircraft and why is uncertain. One of the parts in Mozambique was discovered on a sandbank by American adventurer Blaine Gibson, who has been searching for Flight 370 over the last year. Soon after Gibson's find was publicized, a South African teenager realized a piece of debris he'd found on a beach during a family vacation in Mozambique might also be from the plane. Earlier this week, an archaeologist walking along South Africa's southern coast found a piece of debris with part of an aircraft engine manufacturer's logo, and authorities now plan to examine that part, too.