Report scathingly criticized for failing to find causes of missing flight MH370

By Cao Siqi Source:Global Times Published: 2018/7/30 20:18:39

Report will not affect China-Malaysia ties: expert

Grace Subathirai Nathan (center), daughter of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 passenger Anne Daisy, speaks at a press conference after being presented with the final investigation report on the missing flight in Putrajaya, Malaysia on Monday. Relatives of people on Flight MH370 said on Monday they hope a long-awaited report into the plane's disappearance might give them answers to one of the world's most enduring aviation mysteries. Photo: AFP

 A long-awaited Malaysian government report into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has enraged some of the passengers' relatives, who slammed the report for failing to reveal anything new and said they are waiting for a briefing on Friday in Beijing.

Flight MH370, which was carrying 239 passengers, most of whom were Chinese, disappeared on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014. It triggered the largest hunt in aviation history. But no sign of the jet was found in a 120,000-square-kilometer Indian Ocean search zone and the Australian-led hunt was suspended in January 2017.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said at Monday's routine press conference that China has been closely monitoring the progress of the investigation and hopes the relevant parties closely communicate and coordinate follow-up work.

The 800-plus page report, which reviewed several aspects ranging from airworthiness to cargo assignment and wreckage information, said that the probe team could not determine why the plane went off its flight route.

"The change in the flight path likely resulted from manual inputs," it said.

Calling the disappearance of MH370 and the search for it "unprecedented in commercial aviation history," the report said improvements must be made to ensure that this type of event is identified as soon as possible, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

Grace Nathan, the daughter of one of the passengers on the missing plane who attended the briefing in Malaysia, told the Global Times on Monday that the report did not reveal anything new.

Nathan, who represents the relatives of Malaysian passengers, said, "We don't know what happened. We don't know why it happened. We don't know how it happened. And we don't know what is going to be done about it."

Chinese relatives were furious about how some Western media referred to the report as a "final report."

"The Malaysian government did not find the planes, the passengers, the cause of the accident, and therefore there can be no final report," a Chinese relative surnamed Song told the Global Times on Monday. Song's sister was on board.

Though Malaysian Transport Minister Anthony Loke previously described it as the final and full report, Kok Soo Chon, head of the Malaysian International Civil Aviation Organization Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370, said the report is not final and only about the safety investigation to provide safety recommendations, Xinhua reported.

However, Nathan said there is no explanation why none of the four transmitters on the plane sent any distress signal, and there were no signs of stress or anxiety from the pilots. The pilots had no health problems, no mental illnesses, no records of substance abuse, no financial concerns and no disciplinary records. They were disqualified as suspects very early on.

Zhang Qihuai, the lawyer of relatives of nine passengers and deputy head of the Chinese Aviation Law Association, told the Global Times on Monday that they will file a new lawsuit based on the report and clarify the specific compensation being sought.

"The report released by the new Malaysian government will not affect the newly elected Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad's possible visit to China, neither will it affect China-Malaysia ties," Gu Xiaosong, an expert on Southeast Asian studies at the Guangxi Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Monday.

Malaysia's new government, which took office in May, has said the hunt could be resumed but only if new evidence surfaces.

Newspaper headline: Report fails to find causes of the missing flight MH370

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