Malaysia's top transportation official told relatives of more than 200 missing passengers from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 that the search for the missing jetliner would not resume unless new evidence was found.

Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai updating the gathering Monday in Perth, Australia, about the status of the recently suspended three-year search for the missing Boeing 777.

Families object

Liow met the Voice370 group in response to lobbying efforts by family members who objected to last week's decision to halt extensive and expensive search efforts.

"We hope that we can have a good discussion," Liow told reporters, according to the Reuters international news service.

Plane disappeared

Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 was carrying 239 passengers and crew when it vanished in March 2014 on a routine flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. Authorities said the plane appears to have inexplicably veered to the west after takeoff and to have flown across the Indian Ocean before running out of fuel and crashing.

Most of the passengers on the ill-fated flight were from china, but Australia and Malaysia also led search efforts that included mapping of previously uncharted areas of the South Indian Ocean. Numerous countries sent ships to aid the search, including the United States.

Some efforts to continue

Sheryl Keen of Aircrash Support Group Australia, which represented Australian victims, turned over around 100 letters to Liow protesting the suspension and said the Malaysian government minister expressed interest in continuing to try to find the jet.

"We will continue to work on the debris," Liow said at a news conference on the Perth dock.

"We are committed to continue with the search for the debris, and from today on we hope we can get more credible evidence."

Parts of the plane are believed to have been found off Reunion Island off the eastern coast of Africa, and on beaches in Mauritius and Tanzania, but no trace of the missing passengers has been located, Reuters said.