12 March 2014 UPDATE
The world is slowly beginning to understand that the truth of the disappearance of Flight MH370 is that it could be anywhere on half the face of the planet.
Since Saturday, nothing has been seen or heard of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH 370 when it mysteriously disappeared as it neared the Vietnamese coast having left Kuala Lumpur bound for Beijing.
Since there have been conflicting messages coming from authorities in Malaysia as to the circumstances of the Boeing 777’s disappearance.
The simple reality is that the ill-fated flight could be anywhere from the Mid Indian Ocean to the Mid Pacific Ocean. And that, in the 21st century is something that almost escapes our imagination.
Just how can that be?
The BBC reported that the last communication received from a Malaysia Airlines plane suggests everything was normal on board minutes before it went missing over the South China Sea, Malaysian authorities say.
Flight MH370 replied “All right, roger that” to a radio message from Malaysian air control, authorities said.
The search has been widened to waters off both sides of the peninsula.
Malaysia’s air force chief has denied reports the plane was tracked to the Malacca Strait in the west.
The China-bound plane went missing on Saturday with 239 people on board.
It vanished about an hour after it took off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, as it flew over the South China Sea, south of Vietnam’s Ca Mau peninsula. No distress signal or message was sent.
However to add to the mystery Australia’s ABC reported that the Malaysian air force has denied reports a passenger plane that vanished with 239 people on board was detected on radar far west of its flight path.
Interpol has all but ruled out terrorism as the cause of the disappearance of flight MH370, which went missing on Saturday while travelling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, but the CIA says it is not ruling anything out.
In one of the most baffling mysteries in recent aviation history, a massive search operation has so far found no trace of the aircraft or its passengers, six of whom were Australian.
Air force chief General Rodzali Daud was this morning quoted by Malaysian media as saying that radar had last detected the plane over the Strait of Malacca off western Malaysia.
That location would have indicated the flight had banked far to the west of its intended flight path over the South China Sea.
But Mr Rodzali says he “did not make any such statements,” and that newspaper Berita Harian published “what is clearly an inaccurate and incorrect report”.
However, he says authorities have not ruled out the possibility the airliner inexplicably changed course before losing contact.
“The [air force] has not ruled out the possibility of an air turn-back on a reciprocal heading before the aircraft vanished from the radar,” he said.
“This resulted in the search and rescue operations being widened to the vicinity of the waters [off the west coast of Malaysia].”
‘Shock at allegations’
The BBC reported that some 42 ships and 39 aircraft from several countries are taking part in the search for the plane.
Two-thirds of the passengers on board the plane were Chinese. Some were from a range of other Asian countries, North America or Europe.
Meanwhile, Malaysia Airlines said in a statement that it was “shocked” by reports made against its First Officer, Fariq Ab Hamid, who was the co-pilot of the missing flight.
A South African tourist told Australia’s Channel Nine that she and her friend were invited to sit in the cockpit with Fariq Ab Hamid and the pilot during a flight in 2011, in an apparent breach of airline rules.
Malaysia Airlines said it took the reports “very seriously”.
None of the debris and oil slicks spotted in the South China Sea or Malacca Strait so far have proved to be linked to the disappearance.
In the US, CIA Director John Brennan said the possibility of a terror link could not be ruled out. But he said “no claims of responsibility” over the missing jet had “been confirmed or corroborated”.
The International Business Times reports – The team of Malaysian Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein has announced in a press conference that the last radar plot of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 may have been in the Strait of Malacca, off the coast of the Thai province of Phuket.
Hussein and his team confirmed that there was a possibility that the aircraft was last detected in the Strait of Malacca, 200 miles northwest of Penang, by a primary radar.
The plot was last seen at 0215 local time 200 miles northwest of Penang, Malaysia, but officials could not confirm that this was the missing aircraft as the primary radar used only provides a plot and no identification of the aircraft.
“The primary radar was analysed and there was an indication of the possibility of a turn back, this is why a search was conducted in the Strait of Malacca,” a member of Hussein’s transport team said.
“We are corroborating this. It’s a plot. The secondary radar identifies the aircraft but the primary radar just gives a plot and does not give an identification of aircraft,” another member added.
If the revealed plot is correct, it would mean that the last time the plane made contact was near the Thai province of Phuket, as the map shows.
- Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Air Force Chief Denies Plane Tracked to Malacca
- Missing Malaysia Flight MH370: Airline ‘Shocked’ at Co-Pilot Security Breach Revelations
- Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Interpol Names Second Stolen Passport Holder as Delavar Syed Mohammad Reza
- Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: ‘Mario Balotelli’ Lookalikes had Stolen Passports
- Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Iranian Middleman Asked Thai Agent to Book Tickets on Stolen Passports
Therefore, analysis is to be conducted by experts before confirming that the plot is flight MH370.
Penang is a Malaysian island state which is situated on the northwest coast of Peninsular Malaysia next to the Strait of Malacca.
Hussein told a press conference that no physical trace of the missing Malaysia Airline flight has been found in the 27,000 square nautical mile search.
He added that the search for the missing plane is being expanded to cover both stretches of water as the rescue operation enters its fifth day.
42 vessels and 39 aircraft have now been deployed by twelve different countries in an attempt to discover the reason for the aircraft’s mystery disappearance.
After reports that Vietnam is scaling down its efforts in the search and rescue operation, Hussein pledged that the operation will continue until the plane was found.
“My heart reaches out to the families and passengers of the crew and I give you my assurance that it will not reduce the tempo and we will not spare any effort to find plane,” he said.
After one reporter accused the authorities of being in chaos, Hussein said: “It is only confusion if you want it to be confusion. We will do whatever it takes to find it (the plane).”