05/08/2015 20:04 BST | Updated 05/08/2016 06:12 BST

Missing Flight MH370: Wing Fragment On Beach Is From Malaysia Airlines Jet

Part of an aircraft wing that washed up on a beach on the French island of Reunion has been confirmed as coming from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, authorities said tonight.

The airline sent its deepest sorrow to the families and friends of the passengers "on the news that the flaperon found on Reunion Island on July 29  was indeed from Flight MH370".

This had been confirmed jointly by French, Malaysian and Australian authorities.

The airline added: "Family members of passengers and crew have already been informed and we extend our deepest sympathies to those affected.

"This is indeed a major breakthrough for us in resolving the disappearance of MH370.

"We expect and hope that there would be more objects to be found which would be able to help resolve this mystery.

"Moving forward, Malaysia Airlines will continue to provide latest updates and information to the families and will fully co-operate with the relevant authorities on the investigation and recovery of this tragic accident."

The Boeing 777 was travelling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in March 2014 when it vanished with 239 people on board.

Aviation experts at a military base near Toulouse, France, have been trying to establish whether the wreckage was from the doomed flight.

Flaperons are control surfaces on the wing of an aircraft that help to stabilise the plane during low-speed flying during take-off and landing.

An official report in March by the Malaysian government, a year on from the plane's disappearance, was regarded by aviation experts as doing little to solve the mystery.

There has been speculation as to the behaviour of the the flight's captain, father-of-three Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53.

But the report said he showed no unusual signs of stress before the plane departed, and nor were there worrying signs exhibited by co-pilot Fariq Abdul Hamid or the cabin crew.

Relatives of passengers on the flight have expressed their frustration at the lack of answers to what happened.