Debris found in the French island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean appears to be a part of the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 that mysteriously disappeared in March 2014, media reports said on Thursday.
The Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 en-route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, with 239 people onboard -- 227 passengers and 12 crew members -- vanished on March 8, 2014.
A year-long multinational search has found no sign of the plane. Xavier Tytelman, a former military pilot who now especialises in aviation security, was contacted on Wednesday by a man living in Reunion island.
The man sent Tytelman a series of photos showing wreckage of a plane, which the Frenchman said could possibly be the missing MH370, The Telegraph reported.
"I've been studying hundreds of photos and speaking to colleagues," Tytelman said, adding "and we all think it is likely that the wing is that of a Boeing 777 -- the same plane as MH370".
"Police in Reunion examining the wreckage say that it looks like it's been in the water for around a year, which again would fit with MH370. We can't say for certainty, but we do think there is a chance that this is it," he added.
According to a CNN report, the Malaysian government has dispatched a team to Reunion Island to investigate the debris, Transportation Minister Liow Tiong Lai said in New York. "We need to verify. We have wreckage found that needs to be further verified before we can further confirm if it belongs to MH370. So we have dispatched a team to investigate on these issues and we hope that we can identify it as soon as possible," the minister said.
Malaysian Airlines said it was working with authorities to determine where the part came from. Antoine Forestier, a journalist on the island where the debris was found, said people who were on shore gardening saw the plane part drifting in the ocean. Reporters from Antenne Reunion looked at the debris, which Forestier said was about 2 metres by 1 metre.