Wed10182017

LAST_UPDATEWed, 18 Oct 2017 10pm

[NEWS ARCHIVE 8/3 - 9/3] MISSING BOEING 777: MAS KL-Beijing Flight MH370

pray for mh370 fb1pray for mh370 fb1Probe Into Missing Malaysia Plane Looks At Possible Mid-Air Disintegration, Says Source


KUALA LUMPUR: Officials investigating the disappearance of a Malaysian airliner with 239 people on board are narrowing the focus of their inquiries on the possibility that it disintegrated in mid-flight, a senior source said today.

Malaysia Airlines flight 370 vanished after climbing to a cruising altitude of 35,000 feet between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing in the early hours of yesterday, but search teams have still not been able to make any confirmed discovery of wreckage in seas beneath the plane's flight path almost 48 hours after it took off.

“The fact that we are unable to find any debris so far appears to indicate that the aircraft is likely to have disintegrated at around 35,000 feet,” said the source, who is involved in the investigations in Malaysia.

If the plane had plunged intact from such a height, breaking up only on impact with the water, search teams would have expected to find a fairly concentrated pattern of debris, said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak publicly on the investigation.

The source was speaking shortly before Vietnamese authorities said a military plane had spotted at sea an object suspected to be part of the missing airliner.

Asked about the possibility of an explosion, such as a bomb, the source said there was no evidence yet of foul play and that the aircraft could have broken up due to mechanical issues.

Malaysian authorities have said they are focused on finding the plane and have declined to comment when asked about the investigations.

 


-The Malay Mail


Search In Coastal Areas


KELANTAN: THE search for the missing MH370 off Kelantan coast here today will be focused on the first 60 nautical miles area.

The decision to search closer to shore was made after a combing operation conducted by the search party, involving multiple government agencies as well as from foreign countries, had covered most of the possible areas up to the Malaysia - Vietnam border about 200 nautical miles from the coast.

Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency director-general Datuk Amdan Kurish said they have yet to find any debris of the missing Malaysian Airlines flight.

"Our operations at the South China Sea off Kelantan coast had covered almost the entire area up to our border with Vietnam.
"Initially, we concerted efforts at areas between 100 and 200 nautical miles from the coast, and this evening we covered the areas between 70 and 100 nautical miles.

"Now, only a small area from the Kelantan coast up to 60 nautical miles, is left.

"This area is the least probable location, but we are not taking any chances and will focus on it tomorrow.," he told reporters during a press conference in Gong Kedak here yesterday.

He said vessels and aircraft from foreign countries, including the US Navy, Singapore Navy and China Coast Guard, had also joined the search party today.

Amdan said the search efforts there tomorrow will be coordinated by the Royal Malaysian Navy and MMEA.

Meanwhile, Amdan said four MMEA vessels had also been deployed to assist search missions for the missing MH370 at the Straits of Malacca yesterday.

The vessels - KM Marlin, KM Gagah, KM Sugut and KM Burau, under the agency's Northern Region, were deployed to comb the waters near Pulau Perak in Kedah.

He said four more vessels had also been put on standby to assist the search parties there.

"Authorities have started search efforts at the Straits of Malacca following information that the MH370 might have tried to return to KLIA, and we deployed four vessels to help.

"If necessary, we will also deploy our aircrafts and helicopters there soon," he said.

 

 


-New Straits Times

Indonesia Sends Five Warships, A Helicopter To Find Missing MAS Aircraft


JAKARTA: The Indonesian Navy (TNI-AL) has ordered five warships and a helicopter to help search for the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370, which disappeared enroute to Beijing, early yesterday morning.

TNI-AL Chief of Staff, Admiral Marsetio said he had contacted the Malaysian Royal Navy (TLDM) commander Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Jaafar on the matter.

“They (TLDM) have requested for our help to find the MAS aircraft which was reported uncontactable,” said Marsetio to Antara today.

“We are also in touch and share information with our international colleagues in this mission,” he said.
The MAS aircraft, disappeared on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after departing from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) at 12.41am yesterday.

There were 239 passengers, including two children and 12 crew aboard the aircraft.

The aircraft should have landed in Beijing at 6.30am.

 


-Bernama



Result Of Oil Trace Expected By Noon Tomorrow: MMEA


TOK BALI: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency,(MMEA) will be sending a sample of the oil traces found about 100 nautical miles from the coast of Kelantan to the Chemistry Department in Petaling Jaya for analysis.

Its director general Admiral Datuk Amdan Kurish said the result was expected around noon tomorrow.

"The traces of oil is our most significant find today.It is different from the oil released from passing ships or petroleum rig."

"That is why we have to send the sample for expert analysis. We don't have the facility here," he told a press conference at the MMEA district 10 headquarters here.

Mohd Amdan had earlier gone on a four hour search aboard an agency Bombardier plane covering 70 to 100 nautical miles off Kuala Terengganu this evening.

On another development, Mohd Amdan said the agency has sent four ships to Pulau Perak, about 60 nautical miles from Langkawi to check in the area.

He said the action was taken following reports that radar has detected MH370 making a turn towards the Straits of Malacca.



-New Straits Times



Debris Near Tho Chu Island Not From MH370


SEPANG: The heat of finding a peculiar object floating 100km south-southwest of Vietnam's Tho Chu island had turn up cold as authorities have confirmed that it did not belong to the Boeing B777-200 that has been missing since Saturday.

Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the team from the Vietnamese side of the Search and Rescue (SAR) effort had reaffirmed that the object, believed to be aeroplane debris, did not come from the aircraft.

He said investigations on the stolen passports used to board masquerading passengers, was still on-going.

Armed Forces Chief Gen Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zain said the search effort intensified today as the 20 nautical mile (Nm) search radius where the plane was last detected some 150 Nm south of Vietnam, had increased to 50 Nm.

Zulkifeli said as at 7pm yesterday some 34 aircraft and 40 vessels had been deployed to join the SAR joint-operations with neighbouring countries and other nations such as the United States, China, and Australia.

He added several submersible vessels used in the operation were not of military capabilities but for underwater rescue.

The operation is expected to go on through the night but aircraft involved in the effort would only resume at about 7am tomorrow with the addition of two other planes from Australia.

 

-New Straits Times



UiTM Perlis And UniMAP Students Held Special Prayer For MH370


ARAU: More than 1000 students took part in a special prayer for the safety of 239 people on board of the Malaysia Airlines System MH370 held simultaneously at ‎Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UiTM) Perlis and Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP) here today.

The prayer ‎sessions were organised by the UiTM Perlis' Peninsular Malay Students Coalition (GMPS) branch and UniMAP students.
‎In UiTM Perlis, the prayer was held at the campus's An-Nur Mosque, after the Maghrib prayers.

The GPMS branch adviser, Nur Aishah Zakaria said, the idea to hold the prayer was opted during her discussion with popular motivator and UiTM Perlis lecturer Professor Md Izuddin Ali.

"We pray for the safety of all on board of the MH370 regardless of their nationality and religion.

"This is ‎part of our emotional support to those in board of the plane and their families," she said Aishah, who is also the UiTM Perlis ‎Student Leadership Unit executive officer.

Meanwhile UniMAP students of Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP) also gathered in several groups to perform the special prayer at its hostel.

‎Its Vice Chancellor Datuk Prof Dr Kamarudin Hussin, said the prayer was part of the university's emotional support ‎for the MH370 passengers and relatives.

‎"We feel very sad upon learning the news and our prayer are with those on board of MH370 and their family members," he said when contacted.



-New Straits Times




MMEA Deployed Four Vessels To Straits Of Malacca


KELANTAN: THE Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency have deployed four vessels to assist search and rescue mission at the Straits of Malacca today.

Meanwhile, search parties at the South China Sea off the Kelantan coast here have combed almost all areas up to the Malaysia - Vietnam border some 200 nautical miles from the coast.
I

ts director-general Datuk Amdan Kurish said the four vessels from their Northern Region base were sent to help search missions at the Straits of Malacca near Pulau Perak, following information that the missing MH370 flight might have tried to return to Kuala Lumpur International Airport before it went missing.

"Four other vessels have been put on standby to assist the mission in the Straits of Malacca.

"If there is indication of the flight's location there, we will also deploy our aircrafts there," he told reporters at Gong Kedak here earlier today.

Meanwhile, on the operations at the South China Sea, Amdan said searchers are going to start combing downwards - from 60 nautical miles down to the Kelantan coast, tomorrow.

He said Navy and government agencies' vessels from foreign countries, including Vietnam, Singapore and the United States have also helped in search efforts at the South China Sea today.

It was learnt that the Royal Malaysian Navy will coordinate search efforts by the foreign countries' naval ships, while MMEA will coordinate operations by the other agencies.

Already present since search and rescue operation started yesterday were four MMEA and six Royal Malaysian Navy vessels, assisted by aircrafts and helicopters from multiple agencies.

 


New Straits Times



Malaysia Welcomes SAR Assistance From Other Countries
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia welcomes assistance from other countries and international organisations in the search-and-rescue (SAR) operation for missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement here today.
It also expressed its gratitude to the countries involved in the SAR operation namely Vietnam, China, the United States, Singapore and Philippines for deploying their assets to support and assist in the operation.
It said the government recognised the anguish and anxiety of the next-of-kin and family members of those on board the flight.
It said the ministry would provide its fullest cooperation to the respective Foreign Missions in Malaysia whose nationals were passengers of Flight MH370.
An operations room had also been set up by the ministry and can be contacted at 03-88874570 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., the statement added.
The SAR operation was launched yesterday after Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from the KL International Airport at 12.40am Saturday.
It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30am the same day.

New Straits Times



US Dispatch Two Ships, Aircraft To Assist SAR Operation
KUALA LUMPUR: The United States (US) has dispatched two of its navy ships to assist in the search and rescue (SAR) operation of the Malaysian Airlines (MAS) flight MH370, which was reported missing on Saturday.
The US embassy said in a statement today that following a request from the Malaysian Government, the US navy had dispatched the USS Pinckney (DDG 91) and the USNS John Ericsson to assist in the SAR operation.
"We managed to send in our DDG 91, an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, to the scene and arrived this afternoon to assist in the search of the area.
"The DDG 91 carries two MH-60R helicopters that can be equipped for search and rescue missions," said the statement.
It said the USNS John Ericsson, a replenishment oilier operated by the Military Sealift Command, had sailed out from Singapore this morning to support the search and rescue efforts.
In addition to both the ships, a US Navy P-3C Orion aircraft that carries long-range search, radar and communications capabilities had departed from the Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, Japan this morning and had begun to search the area, it said.
According to the statement, a team from the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration were currently en route to the region to offer assistance.
"The US government continues to closely follow the development regarding the air craft and is assisting the Malaysian Government with search and rescue efforts.
"We extend our thoughts and prayers to the loved ones of those on board the MAS flight," it said.
The search and rescue operation was launched yesterday after MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from the KL International Airport at 12.40am Saturday. 
It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30am the same day.

New Straits Times



Day 2: MH370 Search Operation Intensifies With New Leads
KUALA LUMPUR: Day two of search operations for the missing MH370 on Sunday has been intensified with the involvement of more parties, a wider search area and several new leads uncovered.
The operation was led by the Malaysian armed forces accompanied by American, Vietnamese, Singaporean, Indonesian and Philippine troops, involving both the air and navy bases.
New leads have also emerged indicating that the missing aircraft made an 'air turn back' (the return of an aircraft to air port origin as a result of suspected malfunction).
Royal Malaysian Air Force chief Tan Sri Rozali Dau said the army’s radar records showed signs that the aircraft tried to make an air turn back and that it was supported by the civil radar.
“We have seen the radar record, there is a possibility of the flight making an air turn back. We are still checking with other international agencies, there is the possibility that the aircraft returned to KLIA,” he said at a press conference, referring to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
This new information added to the mystery surrounding the aircraft as the MH370 did not send out any emergency signals and did not report the attempt for an air turn back, if it had actually done so.
Meanwhile, the investigation into the missing aircraft had also focused if there were elements of terrorism with the confirmation that two of the passengers on board had used false passports.
"The two passengers, captured by the KLIA’s closed circuit cameras, are currently being investigated," said Department of Civil Aviation director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman.
“We have CCTV recordings from the check-in up to departure,” he said.
An Italian, Luigi Maraldi, whose name was in the MH370 passenger manifest, did not board the plane.
According to the Italian Foreign Ministry, Maraldi’s passport was stolen last August in Thailand.
An Austria passenger, Christian Kozel, whose name was also on the passenger list, had reported his passport missing while on holiday in Thailand two years ago.
Acting Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said earlier reports stated that four people on the ill-fated plane had used false passports but investigations later revealed there were only two - the Italian and Austrian.
The passengers involved had reportedly bought their tickets from China Southern Airlines, a code share flight with Malaysia Airlines for the Kuala Lumpur- Beijing route.
The Chinese carrier also announced that it had sold tickets to seven MH370 passengers including a Chinese national, a Dutch national, one Malaysian and two Ukrainians.
Meanwhile, Azharuddin said the luggage belonging to five passengers were removed from the aircraft before take-off as they did not board the plane.
The Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency (APMM) had also confirmed spotting oil spills at about 20 nautical miles south from where the MH370 flight was last detected before it vanished off the radar.
APMM director-general Datuk Mohd Amdan Kurish said his team had spotted the oil spill at about 11am, Sunday morning.
“A ship has been sent to the area to obtain samples of the oil spill and to confirm if it indeed came from a plane,” he said.
In a related incident, China’s civil aviation director said debris had also been detected, believed to be from the MH370 flight, but it is still being investigated.
Meanwhile, Malaysia Airline said it understood the people’s concern on wanting to know the latest updates regarding the missing MH370 flight but added the families of passengers were now its main priority.

-Astro Awani


As Night Falls, Minister Says MH370 Still Missing
PUTRAJAYA: The Malaysian government continued to report zero updates this evening from ongoing efforts to locate missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 between the waters of Malaysia and Vietnam.
Approached by the media at Everly Hotel here, acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said despite the round-the-clock search and rescue mission, and numerous reports claiming of possible sightings of the aircraft, the authorities could not confirm anything as yet.
He said the rescue team comprising some 62 military aircraft and vessels have yet to stumble upon any signs of plane wreckage or debris.
The oil slick found near the site where MH370 was last heard from has not been confirmed as having come from the plane, he added.
“We don’t have any updates so far. Maybe the (Vietnamese) military have (updates), but we don’t have updates as yet,” the minister said after visiting family members of flight passengers who are putting up at the hotel.

- The Malay Mail


No Bad Weather When MH370 Went Missing
KUALA LUMPUR: There were no significant changes in the weather over Malaysian waters which could have threatened Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370 on Saturday, said the Malaysian Meteorological Department's National Weather Centre meteorological officer, Khairul Najib.
MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from the KL International Airport at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.
He said from midnight Friday to 3am Saturday, there were no significant changes in the weather pattern to threaten the safety of the aircraft.
This was based on satellite images obtained from Japan's Meteorological Agency (MTAT), he said.
He said even though the Meteorological Department had issued warning on strong winds and rough seas yesterday, it was only for the waters off Sabah and Sarawak, and did not involve the suspected area.  
BERNAMA

Malaysia’s Subs For Combat, Not Rescue Vessels, Says Expert
KUALA LUMPUR: Amid public curiosity and ridicule, a defence expert explained today that the Royal Malaysian Navy's submarines are fitted for combat and could not perform a search and rescue role.
In comparison, the submersible sent by Singapore to help search for the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 is a support-and-rescue vessel.
“Submarines are for warfare, can’t see underwater, can only detect sonar,” the expert told The Malay Mail Online on condition of anonymity.
“Sonar” refers to a method that uses sound waves to navigate, communicate with or detect objects on or under the surface of the water.
There are two types of “sonar” technology: passive sonar that listens for the sound made by other vessels and active sonar, which emits pulses of sounds and listens for echoes.
“The vessel Singapore is sending has equipments to search underwater. It is a relatively new technology that we don't have,” he explained.
According to Singapore's Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen last night, the republic will send the vessel to help find the missing aircraft.
“We have a vessel which is equipped to perform underwater search and can assist in the search and locate operations. It also has divers on the vessel,” Ng told reporters yesterday.
The Navy has two Scorpene class submarinesin its fleet, dubbed KD Tunku Abdul Rahman and KD Tun Abdul Razak that cost over RM2 billion each.
The diesel-electric attack submarines can dive to a depth of up to 350 metres and carry a 31-man crew each.
At over 60 metres long, they are also equipped with torpedoes and anti-ship missiles.
Meanwhile, Singapore Navy's submersible is attached to the search and rescue vessel MV Swift Rescue.
At only 9.6 metres long, it is operated by a two-man crew and can dive up to 500 metres.
“US vessels that are being deployed could also have the similar technology,” the defence expert added.
“We don’t have the technology to look deep under water, maybe the US does.”
But he also pointed out the challenges in deep-sea searches, noting that the Royal Malaysian Air Force had lost a SkyHawk fighter jet at the South China Sea in 1980s that was never found.
MH370 has been missing for over 40 hours and its location continues to remain a mystery despite a massive search and rescue operation jointly conducted by Malaysian and foreign militaries.
A total of 22 military aircraft are currently retracing the route taken by the Malaysia Airlines plane and a fleet of 40 ships are also plying the waters between Malaysia and Vietnam, according to Malaysian Armed Forces.
The craft are mostly Malaysian military, but also include ships and aircraft from the US Navy, the Royal Thai Navy and Air Force, as well as vessels from China and Indonesia.
The search scope was widened further after the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) confirmed its radar sighted a possible attempt by MH370 to turn back midflight.
The Malay Mail

Contiguous Tickets For MH370 Deepens Mystery
KUALA LUMPUR: Two people who boarded the missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 using the stolen passports of an Italian and an Austrian appear to have bought their tickets together, adding to the mystery.
The two tickets were bought from China Southern Airlines in Thai baht for identical prices and had contiguous numbers, international broadcaster CNN reported on its website today citing information from China's official e-ticket verification system Travelsky.
That the two tickets had adjoining numbers showed they were issued together, CNN said.
The revelation is likely to deepen speculation of foul play over the missing plane.
Malaysian authorities have confirmed two passengers has boarded the missing Beijing-bound flight under dubious identities.
“There are only two passengers on record on this aircraft with false passports and we have the CCTV recordings of those passengers from check in, right to the departure point and this record of the CCTVs are now being used in investigations on this,” Department of Civil Aviation Director-General Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman told reporters at the Sama Sama Hotel in Sepang earlier today.
He added that the matter is still under investigation.
It was reported yesterday that one Italian and one Austrian listed on the flight manifest never boarded the plane.
According to several foreign news reports, Italian Luigi Maraldi and Austrian Christian Kozel, both had heir passports stolen some time ago in Thailand.
The existence of two passengers with stolen passports onboard MH370 raised suspicion on the possibility of foul play.
The Boeing B777-200 Malaysia Airlines airship has now been missing for more than 40 hours.
It was first reported missing earlier yesterday morning after MAS confirmed that the Subang Air Traffic Control had notified it that the aircraft dropped off its radar at around 1.30am.
The Beijing-bound flight had departed from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) at 12.41am carrying 239 people on board, including 12 crew members and two infants.
The Malay Mail

Friends Recall Capt Zaharie’s Jovial Mood Before Missing Plane Incident
KUALA LUMPUR: The pilot of a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight that disappeared on a flight to Beijing yesterday was in a jovial mood as usual the day before, according to fellow members of a club he belongs to.
Capt Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, also shared comical pictures on WhatsApp with fellow members Wahida Zamri, 27, and Nor Azana Hamid, 47, of the ‘Kelab Peminat Mila AF5’ or ‘Da Voice of Mila (Davom). This was conveyed by Wahida and Nor Azana who had known Zaharie through the club.
Wahida said Zaharie is a reserved individual but a helpful person who participated in the various activities organised by the club.
“He had also joined an activity to collect funds to help the victims of the war in Gaza,” the administrative assistant said, adding that Zaharie communicated within their WhatsApp group to share information and views on the club’s activities.
Wahida said she regarded Zaharie as a father and was shocked to learn that he was the pilot of the lost MAS Flight MH370.
The Boeing 777-200ER, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am yesterday. It was to have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.
Nor Azana, who claimed to have known Zaharie since 2007, said he was a highly experienced pilot with 33 years of service.
“He has talked about how he trains new recruits. He has the talent to teach people,” said the accountant.
Bernama

Australia Offers Two Aircraft For Search Mission
KUALA LUMPUR: The Australian government will be sending two maritime surveillance patrol aircraft to help in the search for Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370 which went missing since early yesterday.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott made the offer in a telephone call at noon today.
Najib said the assistance was offered based on the cordial bilateral relations between the two countries.
He said the aircrafts were expected to depart Australia late this evening and will arrive at a site determined by the Malaysian authorities, such as the Civil Aviation Department and Navy. “I accepted the offer and thanked the Australian Prime Minister.
“I believe the contribution will help us in our search for the missing plane,” he told reporters after opening the 2014 National Unity Programme here today.
He said additional search and rescue assets and equipment were needed as the operation area had been expanded in the effort find the missing plane soon.
He said in the telephone call, Abbott also expressed the sympathy of the Australian government over the missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft. Six of the 227 passengers onboard MH370 were Australians.
The plane, which 12 crew on board, was en-route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur when it disappeared from radar at 1.30 a.m. yesterday.
Bernama

Food Supplies To Family Members
PUTRAJAYA: The Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry had contributed food supply to the family members of the passengers of Malaysia Airlines MH370 and also to the media personnel who have been on standby at Everly Hotel since yesterday.
Its secretary general Datuk Seri Mohd Hashim Abdullah said a task force has been established after they received directive from its minister, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

"We has established a task force two hours after after instruction were given by the minister for us to also help in assisting the MH370 relatives," he said while handing the aids at the Everly Hotel.

Since the Agriculture ministry specialise in food production, he said the ministry would provide family members, media personnel and volunteers with the most basic necessities which is food and drinks.

"We provided instant noodle, cookies, energy bar and mineral water to several places including Sama-sama hotel, where press conference were held," he said.
New Straits Times

Immigration Officers Under Probe
PUTRAJAYA: Action will be taken against Immigration officers who allegedly allowed two passengers to board MH370 flight using stolen passports.
Home Minister Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi said investigations are ongoing but the result of the findings would be disclosed to the public once it is completed.
"Internal investigations will be carried out especially on the counter officers who failed to identify and match the right citizenship of the passengers and details of the passport holders.
Zahid was speaking to reporters before the handing over ceremony of Kembara Bumi Suci Global movement of Moderates memento at Seri Perdana today.
The MH370 aircraft, with 239 passengers and crew members, went off radar yesterday morning.
A multinational search and rescue mission is under progress in search of the missing plane.

New Straits Times


Families Remain Hopeful
PUTRAJAYA: After more than 24 hours of being left in the dark, relatives of the missing MH370 aircraft were still hoping for good news while preparing themselves for the worst.
The father of Mohd Sofian Ibrahim, one of the MH370 passengers said he was all prepared for any possibilities.
While still having hope for the safety of his son who was scheduled to report for duty at the International Trade and Industry Ministry (Miti) branch office in Beijing, he said he could only pray and wait for further instruction from the authorities.
"If they ask us to go to the unknown location tonight, I'm ready. But looking at how the situation is right now, I believe we would not receive any information soon," he said when met at the Everly Hotel.
Ibrahim Abd Razak who came from Alor Star, Kedah said his son regularly went overseas for work but this time around he went to Beijing to work there permanently.
"I don't usually send my son to the airport, but I went to accompany him on Friday since I won't be seeing him for a long time. I really did not expect things would turn out this way," he said calmly.
As all of the family members are still overwhelmed with the tragedy, he said the counselling assistance provided by the Department of Social Welfare really helped them to remain calm and positive.
Meanwhile, Subramaniam Gurusamy, 59 who failed to hold back his tears said his hope remained high for his son, Puspanathan Subramaniam, 34, a Petronas marketing manager who was also on MH370 flight and hoped to be found safe.
"Puspanathan is my only son and our family are still hoping for him to come back even though the plane has been missing for more than 24 hours," said the security guard.
Subramaniam said Puspanathan was expected to be in Beijing for two weeks for work purposes.

New Straits Times


Loved Ones Turn To Twitter
KUALA LUMPUR: Family members of MH370 crew have turned to social network to express their feelings towards their missing loved ones.
The daughter of an air stewardess expressed sadness over the uncertainty of her mother's safety.
Known as Jasmine Johari on her twitter account, she began to tweet about the MAS MH370 flight around 2.27pm yesterday where she tweeted “Ya allah . Mama no word can say #PrayForMH370” and followed by “My mom i hope u safe” a minute later.
She later tweeted that she was waiting for updates of the incident and that she was missing her mother before replying to comforting tweets by other Twitter users.
She also thanked everyone for their concern and prayers for her mother and everyone on board.
“Im glad i really appreciate to who that pray for my mom and all the passengers . God bless you all . Im trying to be strong here,” tweeted Jasmine, around 11.50pm last night.
At 11.48am today, Jasmine tweeted a screenshot of a Whatsapp conversation with her mother.
Meanwhile, Twitter user [email protected]_, known as only Maira, said to be the daughter of cabin crew Andrew Nari said she wanted her father to come back.
  Maira tweeted on 12.06pm yesterday: “God.... The only thing I want is my father..... Nothing, but my father. I want my father back.”
  “Kenapa daddy perlu kerja semalam? Kenapa daddy tak cuti? :'( Kenapa perlu daddy? (Why does daddy had to work yesterday? Why was daddy working on that day? Why must it be daddy?),” she later tweeted at 12.08pm yesterday.
  Maira was overwhelmed by the feedback from public as it opened her eyes on how kind-hearted Malaysians really are in showing their concern.
  At 9.27am today, Maira  hoped that people will stop spreading rumours about the MAS MH370 flight as it has affected her.
  “I really do hope that people will stop spreading rumours and all those edit photos and ect or anything as it effects my feelings,” she said.
  She then asked for some privacy from the media as she felt very disturbed at this moment. She tweeted: “The medias..., they're very disturbing. I know that they're just doing their job, but we need some privacy.”
  Another relative of cabin crew Wan Swaid Wan Ismail had expressed his shock over the news where he prayed for the safety of Wan Swaid.
  Izzat Nazli, on his twitter account began tweeting on 11.48am yesterday where he tweeted, “Ya Allah! My cousin is in the MH370 aircraft. Ya Allah make ease of the situation”
  He later tweeted that he was waiting for news regarding the MAS MH370 flight situation at the KLIA and that, Malaysia Airlines Group Chief Executive Officer, Ahmad Jauhari Yahya had explained to family members on the current situation.
  Izzat had tweeted asking for people not to spread any fake news and rumours. He also said to never lose hope.
  At 3.21pm today, Izzat had mentioned that MAS staff still had no clue on their relatives’ whereabouts and did not mentioned anything about the plane being hijacked.
  “@MAS staff told us, they will find the location n they will tell us if they know the details of the location. #PrayForMH370.

New Straits Times


Pray For Safety Of All Passengers, Crew: Tun Abdullah
SEPANG: Former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has called on the people in the country regardless of religion to continue to pray for a positive outcome in the search and rescue operation for missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH37.
"We can see the efforts of officers and men in the search and rescue operation. All Malaysians, be they Malay or non-Malay, Muslim or non-Muslim, all must fervently for the safety of all on board, even though it (missing of the plane) has entered the second day," he said.
He said this when asked to speak by the Buddhist Association of Malaysia which performed a ritual to pray for the safety of the passengers and crew of Flight MH370, at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport(KLIA) here today.
Earlier, Abdullah had performed the Zohor prayers, followed by "Solat Hajat" (special prayers) at the KLIA mosque for the same.
MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from the KL International Airport at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.
In KOTA BARU, Kelantan Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob also called on the everyone regardless of ethnicity or religion to pray for positive  development in the search and rescue operation.
"God willing, with Malaysian united in facing such a disaster, we hope the families of those involved will be patient while waiting for the latest developments," he said on his Facebook page.
BERNAMA


Australia Joined SAR Mission: PM
KUALA LUMPUR: Australia has joined in the fray of several nations helping Malaysia to locate the missing Beijing-bound MH370 aircraft.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said he had received a telephone call from his counterpart in Australia, Tony Abbott, to join the search and rescue mission.
"Just now, I received a call from the Australian prime minister who had expressed the country's wish to help Malaysia to find the missing aircraft.
"The Australian prime minister was sympathetic with what had happened and agreed to help Malaysia based on the close ties between both countries," he said during a press conference after he launched the 2014 National Reconciliation Programme here today.
He said the Australian government had agreed to deploy two of its maritime surveillance aircrafts codenamed PC3-Orion, which are equipped with Census radar.

New Straits Times


Families Of Passengers "Getting Better"
PUTRAJAYA: It was a forlorn scene at the Everly Hotel here where the families of passengers on board the missing MH370 flight gathered since yesterday.
More than 100 family members of local passengers as well as from other countries gathered here while waiting to be informed on any development of the more than 24 hours missing plane.
Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, the wife of the prime minister who arrived here at about 12.40pm spent about an hour visiting family members.
Rosmah advised family members to keep on praying for the safety of those on board of the plane and to remain strong.
It is learnt that a total of 18 counsellors from the Department of Social Welfare as well as representatives from the Health Ministry and non-governmental organisations were placed at the hotel to provide emotional support and other assistance to the passengers' family members.
Woman, Family and Community Development deputy minister Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun said family members who are still shock were given counselling and if the needs arise, they would also identify the families' home address and go to their homes to provide the families with support.
"Their mental state has improved. Some of them refused to eat yesterday but today we saw them getting better," she said.
Some 41 rooms were provided for the family members at the hotel since yesterday.

New Straits Times


Rosmah Spends Time With Passengers Family Members
PUTRAJAYA : Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, wife of the prime minister, Saturday spent almost two hours with family members of passengers and crew of a missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight, here.
She had arrived at The Everly Hotel at 12.45 pm, accompanied by Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister and Wanita Umno vice-head Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun and Wanita Umno information chief Datuk Rosni Zahari. 

Rosni told Bernama later that many of the relatives conveyed their sadness over not having found any trace of the missing Flight MH370.

She said Rosmah gave the assurance that the authorities were doing their best and that they had the assistance of several neighbouring countries.

Rosni also said that Wanita Umno had been instructed by its chief, Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, to conduct prayers at the 191 divisions beginning tonight for the missing aircraft to be found fast.

MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.

New Straits Times


Police Cooperates With International Agencies: IGP
KEMAMAN : Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri KhalidAbu Bakar said Malaysian police are working with international intelligence agencies to investigate the missing of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370.
He said police were gathering information from various parties apart from reviewing the closed circuit television recordings at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport prior to the departure of flight. 

Police were not attributing terrorist threat as the main factor for the disappearance of Flight MH370 but did not rule out such a possibility, he told a media conference here today. 

As such, he told the people not to speculate on the identities of the passengers reported to have boarded the aircraft using forged passports. 

Elaborating further, Khalid said police would also be deploying their personnel to assist in the search and rescue operation. 

The Boeing 777-200ER plane used for Flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing was reported missing from the air traffic control tower radar about one hour after taking off from the Kuala Lumpur International Airpotr (KLIA) at 12.41am on Saturday. 

The aircraft was carrying 227 passengers from 14 countries apart from 12 Malaysian crew members. 

Earlier, Khalid presented aid contributions to 147 police personnel who were affected by floods in early last December.

Bernama

38 Hours On, Still No Sign Of MH370
SEPANG: Nearly 38 hours have gone by since MH370 disappeared from radar, but despite the massive search and rescue effort by Malaysian and foreign military, there is still no sign of the missing aircraft.
A total of 22 military aircraft are currently tracing the route taken by the Malaysia Airlines plane and a huge fleet of 40 ships are plying the waters between Malaysia and Vietnam, according to Malaysian Armed Forces.
The battalion is made up of mostly Malaysian military, but also includes ships and aircraft from the US Navy, the Royal Thai Navy, the Royal Thai Air Force, as well as vessels from China and Indonesia.
The search scope was widened further after the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) confirmed sighting on military radar the possibility of an attempt by flight MH370 to make a turn-back in mid-flight.
But despite the findings, at a scheduled press conference this afternoon, Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman turned up with disappointing news — no confirmed sighting of MH370.
The DCA chief also told anxious pressmen, some who have been gathered at the Sama-Sama Hotel since news of the tragedy hit media headlines yesterday morning, that the next press conference would only be held at 8pm.
The authorities had previously committed to holding media conferences every two hours.
“We have nothing new to report. No new developments, there’s no findings whatsoever from our intensive search in both the South China Sea and the Straits of Malacca.
“Our next press conference will be at 8pm,” he told reporters who protested in disappointment.

The Malay Mail Online

Search Widens For MH370, 62 Vessels Roped In
SEPANG: A battalion of 62 aircraft and 40 sea vessels have have banded together in a multi-nation military effort involving neighbouring Southeast Asian countries and the US in a race against time to find the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
Chief of Malaysian Armed Forces General Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin said the authorities have also widened their search area to include the Straits of Malacca to the west as fears grow for the fate of the Beijing-bound jetliner and its 239 people onboard.
“As at last night, we have widened our search to the Straits of Malacca without reducing our resources in the east, the South China Sea,” he told a news conference here.
He also said the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) is providing 11 aircraft in the search, while the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) had seconded four aircraft and the navy, one helicopter.
The Malay Mail Online


Long Wait Takes Toll On Families Of Missing MH370
PUTRAJAYA: An old lady sits alone in the lobby of the three-star Everly Hotel here, clearly distraught over what could have happened to her relatives on flight MH370, which dropped off the radar over 30 hours ago.
Cradling her head in one hand, she cast a pained look at the skyline as families mill about, anxiously waiting for information from the authorities on the missing plane.
Around her, other family members of the passengers and crew displayed visible strain over the long wait, with officials from Malaysia Airlines unable to provide new information beyond the promise that the national carrier has arranged their transport to Vietnam once the missing aircraft is confirmed discovered.
Subramaniam Gurusamy, 59, said he could hardly believe that the plane had gone missing after he was told the news yesterday morning.
“My son had always been flying for his work. The last thing he told me was that he was just going to be away for a week and would be home soon,” he said of his eldest born, Puspanathan, 34.
Subramaniam said his son, a marketing manager with state oil firm Petronas, was supposed to come home in a week’s time to belatedly celebrate his sister’s birthday, who turns 25 today.
“MAS has not told us anything yet... my parents were estate workers, my wife and I were estate workers, and we worked hard to put our children through school.
“My son became a successful person, but now he could be gone. You plant a seed and hope for a tree to grow, but now he might not be there anymore,” he said through sobs, citing an old Tamil proverb.
Another father, Ibrahim Abdul Razak, 75, could only hope that his son, Mohamad Sofuan, will emerge safe from this crisis.
“My son was on the plane heading to Beijing for his new posting. We were told the news that the plane went missing yesterday morning, and now we are just waiting.
“All I can ask is for everyone to pray that my son is safe,” he said of Mohamad Sofuan, who is an officer with the International Trade and Industry Ministry.
Families of the passengers of the missing Boeing 777-200 have been waiting for news for over a day now since the plane disappeared off the radar at around 1.30am yesterday morning.
A multi-national search and rescue effort has been launched since yesterday, centered on the Gulf of Thailand and the South China Sea.
Family members have been on standby for most of the morning as they wait for MAS to finalise their flight details. It is understood that the national carrier will fly two relatives of each of the 239 passengers and crew to Vietnam.

The Malay Mail Online


DCA: Only Two Passengers On MH370 With Stolen Passports
SEPANG: There were only two passengers in missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 bound for Beijing with dubious identities and not four as reported in several media, Department of Civil Aviation Director-General Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman clarified today.
Azharuddin confirmed at a press conference here that the duo had boarded the ill-fated aircraft using stolen passports, adding that the matter is still under investigation.
“There are only two passengers on record on this aircraft with false passports and we have the CCTV recordings of those passengers from check in, right to the departure point and this record of the CCTVs are now being used in investigations on this,” he told reporters at the Sama Sama Hotel here.
The Malay Mail Online




MAS To Fly Chinese Families To KL
BEIJING: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) will fly family members of the Chinese passengers of a lost flight who intend to go Kuala Lumpur, the airline said here Sunday.
"MAS will bear all the expenses," the airline's regional senior vice-president for Greater China, Joshua Law Kok Hwa, said, adding that they must have valid a passport and visa to visit Malaysia.
Officials from MAS would receive them at the KL International Airport, Law told Malaysian reporters at the Lido Hotel.
He said a few relatives of the Chinese passengers on board the missing Flight MH370 had requested to fly to Malaysia to obtain updates on the situation.
MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed here at 6.30 am.

Bernama


MCA Offers Translation Service To MAS, China Embassy
KAJANG: The MCA is offering translation service to Malaysia Airlines (MAS) and the China Embassy in Kuala Lumpur for the benefit of families of passengers on board the missing MH370 flight particularly from China.
Party President Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the assistance was crucial for the dissemination of accurate information on the fate of the missing plane and the passengers.

Many of the passengers were China nationals and maybe their family members or business partners in Malaysia needed translation service in getting the latest information on the missing plane, he told reporters after launching the MCA Youth election machinery for the Kajang state by-election at the party's operations room here today.

Present was MCA vice-president, Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun, who is also the Barisan Nasional's candidate for the by-election. 

Flight MH370, with 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew members, went missing during its flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after its departure from KLIA at 12.41 am on Saturday. 

It was to land in Beijng at 6.30 am.

Bernama



Pilot Of Missing MAS Plane Was His Normal Self The Day Before, Say Friends
KUALA LUMPUR: The pilot of a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight that disappeared on a flight to Beijing on Saturday was in a jovial mood as usual the day before, according to fellow members of a club he belongs to.
Capt Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, also shared comical pictures on WhatsApp with fellow members Wahida Zamri, 27, and Nor Azana Hamid, 47, of the 'Kelab Peminat Mila AF5' or 'Da Voice of Mila' (Davom).
This was conveyed by Wahida and Nor Azana who had known Zaharie through the club.
Wahida said Zaharie was a reserved individual but a helpful person who participated in the various activities organised by the club.
"He had also joined an activity to collect funds to help the victims of the war in Gaza," the administrative assistant said, adding that Zaharie communicated within their WhatsApp group to share information and views on the club's activities.
Wahida said she regarded Zaharie as a father and was shocked to learn that he was the pilot of the lost MAS Flight MH370.
The Boeing 777-200ER, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It was to have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.
Nor Azana, who claimed to have known Zaharie since 2007, said he was a highly experienced pilot with 33 years of service.
"He has talked about how he trains new recruits. He has the talent to teach people," said the accountant.

Bernama



Family Members Demand Info On Missing MH370 Flight
KUALA LUMPUR: The long wait is taking a toll on family members of the passengers and crew of the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane which dropped off the radar over 30 hours ago.
Many were clearly distraught over what could have happened to their relatives on flight MH370, with MAS officials unable to provide new information beyond the promise that the national carrier has arranged for their transport to Vietnam once the missing aircraft is confirmed discovered.
The Prime Minister's wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, paid a visit to the families, who are now placed at the Everly Hotel in Putrajaya, to express her sympathy.
She advised them to be patient and remain strong and assured them that the authorities are doing as much as they can.
"They need to verify all the information they tell you. I'm sure they will let you know as soon as they get a confirmation,” she was heard saying to a grief-stricken mother.
The meeting session then continued with a short briefing behind closed doors of which members of the press were requested to leave.
MH370, a code share flight with China Southern Airlines, left KLIA for Beijing at 12:41am on Saturday morning.
All communication with the plane was lost at 2:40am and no distress signal or call was received.
The plane was carrying 239 passengers, 38 of them Malaysians. It was scheduled to arrive at the Beijing International Airport at 6:30am local time.

Awani


Pilot Of Missing MAS Plane Was His Normal Self The Day Before, Say Friends
KUALA LUMPUR: The pilot of a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight that disappeared on a flight to Beijing on Saturday was in a jovial mood as usual the day before, according to fellow members of a club he belongs to.
Capt Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, also shared comical pictures on WhatsApp with fellow members Wahida Zamri, 27, and Nor Azana Hamid, 47, of the 'Kelab Peminat Mila AF5' or 'Da Voice of Mila' (Davom).
This was conveyed by Wahida and Nor Azana who had known Zaharie through the club.
Wahida said Zaharie was a reserved individual but a helpful person who participated in the various activities organised by the club.
"He had also joined an activity to collect funds to help the victims of the war in Gaza," the administrative assistant said, adding that Zaharie communicated within their WhatsApp group to share information and views on the club's activities.
Wahida said she regarded Zaharie as a father and was shocked to learn that he was the pilot of the lost MAS Flight MH370.
The Boeing 777-200ER, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It was to have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.
Nor Azana, who claimed to have known Zaharie since 2007, said he was a highly experienced pilot with 33 years of service.
"He has talked about how he trains new recruits. He has the talent to teach people," said the accountant.

Bernama

Debris Spotted But Unsure If It Belongs To MH370 -Chinese Aviation Official
KUALA LUMPUR: Some debris has been reportedly spotted off the east coast of West Malaysia, but it is still unconfirmed if it belonged to the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 flight, according to a top Chinese aviation official.
Civil Aviation Administration of China director Li Jiaxiang said the sighting was made in an "area of longitude 103.29 degrees east and a latitude 6.42 degrees north.
“With relevant technical measures, suspected debris has been seen in the area of longitude 103.29 degrees east and a latitude 6.42 degrees north. This is pending confirmation by the arrival of the search teams,” said Li in Beijing, according to news reports.
Li, however, that he was still awaiting confirmation from the search teams of the find.
"We are still unclear about the exact situation and position of the plane, and hold hope that the passengers are miraculously alive," he said, according to a report by China News.
"It is also unclear at the moment if the plane was involved in a terrorist attack," he added.
According to another report, the debris find were apparently consistent with photos supposedly taken by a Chinese passenger on board another MAS flight from Beijing which landed safely in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday morning.
The photos show what appears to be fragmented debris floating on waters about 90 minutes out to sea from KL.
There has been no significant clues to the condition of MH370, which has been missing for more than 30 hours since it disappeared from traffic control radar since Satuday 2.40am.
Yesterday, two large oil slicks spotted on Saturday by the Vietnamese air force.
The search and rescue efforts, involving the ships and aircrafts of several countries, continues.

Awani

DCA Confirms Only Two Passengers With 'False Passports'

KUALA LUMPUR: The Department of Civil Aviation in a press conference at 1 pm on Sunday confirmed only two passengers on the passenger manifest list had ‘false passports’, not four as reported earlier.
Director-General Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said they have closed-circuit television (CCTV) recordings of the two passengers from check in right up to departure point.
The recordings are being used in an investigation.
‘Possibility of air turn back’
Meanwhile, Royal Malaysian Air Force chief Tan Sri Rozali Daud who was also at the media briefing addressed the possibility of flight MH370 making an ‘air turn back’.
‘We are baffled that we received no signal from the Emergency Locator Transmitters (ELT) or the emergency beacons. We re-looked at recordings on the radar and realised there is a possibility the plane made a turn,’
‘Air turn back’ meant the plane might have tried to return to base point, Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).
‘At this juncture, we are collaborating with other international agencies and civil radars,’ Rozali said, adding that because of this development, search and rescues has been widen into the South China Sea.
Indonesia search and rescue team is also assisting in the mission.
When asked by reporters on the standard operating procedures (SOP) of an ‘air turn back’, Malaysia Airlines (MAS) chief executive officer Ahmad Jauhari Yahya said the plane should report to base and the air traffic control.
‘From what we know, air traffic control recording did not receive a distress signal. We are equally puzzled,’ said Ahmad Jauhari.
‘40 ships, 22 aircrafts deployed for search and rescue’
Meanwhile, forty ships and 22 aircrafts are currently participating in the search and rescue efforts.
The search areas have been widened from the South China Sea to the Straits of Malacca and west coast of Penang.
"Forty ships are doing search and rescue operations in both areas. We have one helicopter from the Royal Malaysian Navy, 11 aircrafts from the Royal Malaysian Air Force, 5 aircrafts from Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (APMM) and one from the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM)," Army chief Gen Tan Sri Zulkifli Zainal Abidin briefed the media.
The United States and Royal Thai Air Force each deployed one aircraft, in addition to two Charlie C-130 deployed by Singapore.
"On the waters, we have 14 ships from Royal Malaysian Navy and 13 from APMM".
13 more are from neighbouring countries (Indonesia- 5; Singapore- 3 ; China -3; Thailand -1, United States -1), in addition to search and rescue operations deployed by Vietnam in their waters.

Awani



Fate Of Missing Flight MH370 Remains A Mystery
KUALA LUMPUR: The fate of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370 which went missing over the South China Sea when flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on Saturday remains a mystery.
There were no reports of bad weather and no indication of why the Boeing 777-200ER aircraft vanished from radar screens at 1.30 am after leaving KL International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang at 12.41 am.
Aviation experts are puzzled as to how the aircraft could have vanished without any trace.
An aviation industry source said today that pilots were trained to make a Mayday call as soon as they encountered an emergency and the first priority would be given to the plane so that it can land safely.
"Something extreme and sudden could have happened on MH370 that impeded the pilots from making the Mayday call. This is because the Boeing 777-200ER is equipped with the Controller Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) to declare an emergency," he told Bernama on condition of anonymity.
However, he remained cautious, saying that the black box of the flight would shed light on the unanswered questions.
Although there is no sign of MH370's disappearance, the aircraft has joined a number of mysterious plane incidents which remain unresolved until today.
The most notable recent case involved an Air France plane carrying 228 people from Brazil to France that vanished after flying into a severe storm over the Atlantic Ocean in 2009.
The Airbus A330 sent an automatic message four hours after it left Rio de Janeiro, reporting a short circuit. It then went missing in mid-ocean, beyond the scope of radar coverage. It was thought at the time to have been struck by lightning.
The wreckage was not found until two years later, along with 104 bodies. The bodies of 74 passengers remain unrecovered, according to Mirror Online, a United Kingdom-based media.
American explorer Amelia Earhart disappeared in July 1939, during her attempt to circumnavigate the globe. Popular theory has it that Earhart's plane crashed into the ocean and was never found, according to a United Kingdom-based online daily, Mirror.
A British South American Airways (BSAA) plane, the Star Tiger, disappeared when flying from Santa Maria in the Azores to Bermuda on Jan 30, 1948.
Another BSAA plane, the Star Ariel, vanished during a flight from Bermuda to Jamaica on Jan 17, 1949.
A crash, if confirmed, would likely mark the US-built airliner's deadliest incident since entering service 19 years ago. It would be the second fatal accident involving a Boeing 777 in less than a year.
An Asiana Airlines Boeing 777-200ER crash-landed in San Francisco in July 2013, killing three passengers and injuring more than 180.

Bernama

Indonesia Helps In Search For Airliner
KUALA LUMPUR: The Embassy of Indonesia here said the country will be sending five ships to help Malaysian authorities in the search and rescue mission to locate the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 today.
Its ambassador Herman Prayitno said Indonesian Navy has been communicating with the Malaysian counterparts.

“The Jakarta office has informed me Indonesia will be sending five ships to help Malaysia authorities as the search area will be further widened. 

“Our navy has been communicating with the Malaysian Navy, they will coordinate us on where our ships will be placed for the mission.

Herman said they have placed three Indonesian embassy staff at Kuala Lumpur International Airport to monitor developments closely.

He also added that the embassy has contacted all families of the passengers on board of the MH370, where one family member has already flown to Kuala Lumpur while others have chosen to wait it out in Indonesia. 

“Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has also informed me that he was also monitoring developments of the missing aircraft closely.

“He has asked all Indonesians worldwide to pray for the 239 people on board, where Indonesia will continue giving the full support needed,” he said.


New Straits Times


Chinese Rescue Force Reaches Suspected Site Of Missing Plane
BEIJING: A Chinese coast guard vessel has entered the waters around the suspected site of the missing Malaysian plane to carry out a rescue mission.
As of 11:30 am on Sunday, the vessel "China Coast Guard 3411" has entered the area and was about 45 nautical miles from where the plane was believed to be when it lost contact with ground control, according to China's State Oceanic Administration.

It is expected to reach the spot at about 2 pm on Sunday.

All crew members on board the ship are now working in six teams in charge of lookout, search, communication, medical treatment, motorboat rescue and logistic supplies, according to the administration.

Contact with the flight was lost along with its radar signal at 1:20 a.m. Beijing time on Saturday when it was flying over the Ho Chi Minh air traffic control area in Vietnam.

The flight was carrying 12 crew members and 227 passengers, including 154 Chinese.

Xianhua


Jakim Offers Advisory Service To Passengers' Families
PUTRAJAYA : The Islamic Development Department (Jakim) has offered advisory services to help families of passengers and crew of the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane cope with the situation.
Its principal assistant director, Fauziah Razap said Jakim would liase with MAS to enable a 'doa selamat' and Yassin recitation to be held. 

"I met the family members of one of the victim. I had advised them to accept fate and persevere in the face of a difficult situation. We understand their agony," she told reporters here today. 

Fauziah said Jakim was willing to provide guidance on Islamic ways to deal with the situation to the passengers' families who were staying at The Everly Hotel here. 

MAS Flight MH370 went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am on Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.


Bernama

Radar Showed Missing Plane May Have Turned Back
SEPANG: Military and civilian radar records have indicated that an air turnback could have been committed by Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 and it was “highly possible”, according to top aviation and military officials.
Royal Malaysian Air Force chief General Tan Sri Rodzali Daud said the aircraft was seen making divergent movements as detected by military radar and this, in some part, was corroborated by civilian radar.
“It is possible that the plane could have deviated from its original flight path and turned (back) reciprocally,” he told reporters during the 1pm update on the flight here.
He said the Air Force was also working with several international agencies with the “right resources technicalities” on the matter, including Boeing, the manufacturer of the plane.
Rodzali however, maintained that there was no distress call from the plane before it disappeared from view.
“We are also baffled as to why there was no emergency beacon from the aircraft,” he said, adding that stakeholders in the search and rescue effort were also rethinking their approach to locate the aircraft.
Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) Director-General Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman who was present at the press conference said video clips of the two men who boarded the flight with purportedly stolen passports were under probe.
Armed forces chief Zulkifeli said there were currently 40 ships and 22 aircraft scouring the search perimeter which had been widened since the revelation of a possible turnback.
An intensified search was also conducted along the Malacca Straits, he said, adding that the assets used in the effort included those from neighbouring countries and the United States and China.
The number of ships and aircraft used in the SAR mission:
Aircraft
Royal Malaysian Navy – 1 (Helicopter)
Royal Malaysian Air Force – 11
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency - 5
Royal Malaysia Police Force – 1
Neighbouring countries – 4
Thai Air Force – 1
United States - 1

Vessels
Royal Malaysian Navy – 14
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency– 13
United States – 1
China – 3
Singapore – 5
Indonesia – 5
Royal Thai Navy – 1
The vessels listed did not include those deployed on the Vietnamese side.
New Straits Times



Love And Support For Capt Zaharie Fills Social Media

SHAH ALAM: Social media has been filled with outpourings of love and support for Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, who piloted the Malaysia Airlines MH370 flight that went missing around 2.40am yesterday.
A tribute article, titled "Tribute: Who exactly is Malaysia Airlines Captain Zaharie Shah of MH370" has been widely shared across Twitter and Facebook since the news of the missing flight broke.

The article, accompanied by pictures of the 53-year-old pilot, described the Penangite as an individual passionate about fyling.

"Even when not piloting the massive Boeing 777, he flies remote-controlled aircraft.

"When he was away from piloting an actual Boeing 777, he built his own simulator to practise even more.

"That's just how passionate he is about flying," the author of the tribute said.

The author also posted a few images of remote-controlled aircrafts owned by Zaharie, which the author claimed were taken from the pilot's personal Facebook page.

Pictures of a Bell 222, a light weight twin-engined helicopter, an amphibious Cataline PBY plane and a flight simulator set up at Zaharie's home were among the images included with the tribute.

Besides his love for aviation, Zaharie also uploaded five video guides on a YouTube channel named "Zaharie Shah".

Among them were guides to viewers on how to waterproof window panes, how to service an air-conditioning unit and repair of a whirlpool icemaker.

According to the tribute, Zaharie was an avid chef and had uploaded several photos of the dishes he cooked on Facebook.

Zaharie joined the airlines in 1981 and has a total flying hours of 18,365 hours.


New Straits Times


More Counsellors Ready To Assist Passengers' Families
KUALA LUMPUR : The Women, Family and Community Development Ministry is ready to provide more counsellors as well as psychological support services to family members of passengers and crew of the missing Malaysia Airlines plane.
"I believe in this kind of situation, the services of counsellors are needed to help reduce the stress and control the emotions of the family members to resign themselves to accept any eventualities," said its minister, Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim in a statement today. 

The Welfare Services Department yesterday deployed 15 counsellors to assist the family members in coping with the situation. 

MAS Flight MH370 went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am on Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.

Bernama


Selangor Pas Asks Members To Hold Hajat Prayers
SHAH ALAM: Selangor Pas leadership has requested its members to carry out Hajat prayers for the missing MH370 flight cabin crew and passengers.
Selangor Pas secretary Mohd Khairuddin Othman said the party leadership and its members had been uneasy since the news of the missing flight broke.

"We, together with all Malaysians, pray for their safety.

"We place high hopes that the rescue teams will soon discover the location of the aircraft and we pray that they will be found in a safe condition," he said in a statement today.

He added that Selangor Pas understood the situation faced by the families involved and urged everyone to persevere while waiting for further news.

MAS flight MH370 had taken off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 12.40am and was supposed to land in Beijing at 6.30am. At 1.30am, however, air traffic controllers lost contact with the Boeing 777-200ER with 227 passengers and 12 crew aboard, its last position was somewhere over the South China Sea.

New Straits Times

MMEA Finds Traces Of Oil Off Kelantan Coast
KELANTAN: Rescuers working to locate the missing MH370 flight found traces of oil at the South China Sea off the Kelantan coast here this morning.
However, it is yet to be ascertained if the oil came from the missing Malaysian Airlines airplane. 
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) director-general Datuk Amdan Kurish said they would take samples of the oil and send it for tests.
Amdan, who was onboard a CL415 Bombardier amphibious aircraft deployed at 6.30am for the search and rescue (SAR) mission, said they found the traces of oil during a four hour search up to the Malaysia-Vietnam border, some 200 nautical miles from the coast here.
"During this morning's mission, we did not find solid evidences that can show us the missing aircraft's location.
"We found traces of oil. However, we have yet to determine whether it came from oil rigs or the MH370.
"I have ordered my officers to take samples of the oil, so that we can send it for tests to determine its origin," he told reporters in Gong Kedak here earlier today.
He said they also spotted an orange object during the mission, prompting the search team to fly low before they found that it was a canvas, similar to the one found yesterday.
Amdan said a MMEA's AW139 helicopter would be deployed this afternoon to continue search mission at wider radius, followed by the amphibious aircraft which was being refuelled.
Earlier, Amdan who landed from the morning mission at noon, was briefed by his officers on further plans of the SAR mission.

New Straits Times

Family Members Of MH370 Passengers Still Await News
SEPANG: The early morning situation at the Anjung Tinjau of KLIA which was cordoned off as a holding area for the families of the passengers on flight MH370 yesterday is now accessible by the public.
The family members who arrived yesterday and were told to come with their passports are believed to have been brought by Malaysia Airlines to a hotel in Putrajaya.
Initially, some of the family members who spoke to Astro AWANI yeterday, said they were anticipating to be brought somewhere but were unclear of the plans.
It is now believed that they will be brought back to KLIA today to await further information about their loved ones.
In the first press conference of the day this morning, Datuk Azharudin Abdul Rahman, DG of the Department of Civil Aviation, said that there was nothing to report as the search and rescue operations through the night uncovered nothing.
MH370, a code share flight with China Southern Airlines, left KLIA for Beijing at 12:41am yesterday morning.
All communication with the plane was lost at 2:40am and no distress signal or call was received.
The flight had registered 239 passengers, 38 of them Malaysian. It was scheduled to arrive at Beijing International Airport at 6:30am local time.

Awani
Three More Aircraft Added To Search And Rescue Operations
SEPANG: Three more aircraft were added to the search and rescue operation for the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 plane, said Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman.
He said operations from last night till this morning could not locate anything.
"There is nothing to report and nothing could be seen by the (search and rescue) team in the South China Sea or at the location where the plane was reported missing from the radar," he told a news conference here on Sunday.
Azharuddin said a ship was also deployed in the operation from last night till this morning.
MAS Flight MH370 went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.
On oil sleeks allegedly spotted in search for the missing plane, he said: "It's not verified yet, it was reported in the media but it's not confirmed yet."
Azharuddin said the authorities were investigating the possibility of a terrorist attack, the aircraft safety record, and reports on two passengers using stolen passports.
He said the investigations covered all angles and records from MAS had been gathered.
Azharuddin said the aircraft data showed no abnormality during the flight.
On reports that the next-of-kin and family members of the passengers would be taken to the KL International Airport (KLIA), Sepang to be flown to an undisclosed location this morning, Azharuddin said, "I leave it the matter to MAS."
Awani

Hishammuddin: Four Names In Flight Manifest Under Probe
SEPANG: Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein has confirmed that at least four names in the manifest of flight MH370 are under probe.
He said the Malaysian intelligence agency was working with its overseas counterparts, including the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and counter-terrorism units from neighbouring countries.

He said he had received the four names and will resume meetings with relevant intelligence agencies.

Hishamuddin, who is also acting transport minister, said the entire flight manifest was also under scrutiny.

The detection of two passports reported missing from Austria and Italy that were purportedly used to board the flight had raised suspicion among the investigators.

He said currently, there were no indications of any security risk and the current focus and priority was to locate the missing Boeing 777-200 aircraft.

“But, if there was a security risk, we will look into where the lapse was.” he told a press conference here during the crisis' 11am update.

Hishammuddin said he was grateful that many countries, including China and the US had offered assistance to locate the plane.

During a meeting with his Singaporean counterpart Dr Ng Eng Heng, he said, the Singaporean government had pledged men and material to assist in rescue efforts.

Singapore has sent at least two ships, including its RSS Vigour and RSS Steadfast. Indonesia and the Philippines were also providing assistance to the search and rescue effort.

However, he said China had yet disclose the number of assets which would be deployed.

The minister did not discount the possibility that the aircraft had made an ‘air turnback’, which was why the search area was expanded.

He also confirmed sightings of an oil slick reported by the Vietnamese authorities as true although no debris was spotted.

A Malaysia Airlines official at the press conference also denied that any other pilot had made contact with the plane shortly before it disappeared.

New Straits Times



Missing Plane News Makes Front-Page Headline Around The World
KUALA LUMPUR : News of the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight was the headline story today of many newspapers around the world.
'The Australian' newspaper carried the headline "Flight families pray for miracle" while the 'Sydney Morning Herald' had "Oil slicks found at sea in search for Malaysia jet" on the front page. 

'USA Today' had "Stolen passports add to flight mystery" on its front page. 

The Sunday edition of 'The Observer' of Britain reported the news with the front-page headline: "Oil slicks spotted in sea as plane disappears with 239 feared dead". 

'The New York Times' said "Passport Theft Adds to Mystery of Missing Jet Carrying 239" on its front page. 

'The Washington Post' carried the news with the headline "Passport mystery adds to concern over missing jet". 

'Beijing Bulletin' had the headline "Passengers with stolen passport on board Malaysia Airlines Flight" on its front page. 

The 'Chicago Tribune', on its front page, carried the story "Malaysian Airlines says 'Fearing the Worst' for Missing Jet". 

MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew, went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about an hour after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.

Bernama


Boeing Team To Help In Search And Rescue Efforts
KUALA LUMPUR: The Boeing team is now en route to assist in search and rescue efforts for the missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft, the aerospace company said in a statement, today.
“Boeing will join the US National Transportation Safety Board team as a technical adviser. 

“The team is now en route to the area so they will be positioned there to offer assistance,” it said. 

Boeing also offers its deepest concern to the families of those aboard the missing flight.

The MH370 flight, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members, was reported missing from the air space between Malaysia and Vietnam over the South China Sea at 2.40am yesterday.

The plane had left Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am and lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control Centre at about 2.40 am. It was to have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am (Beijing time).

New Straits Times


US Assets Help Out In Search
KUALA LUMPUR: The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) has deployed a frigate, a missile corvette and a Sikorsky S- 70B Naval Helicopter to assist in the search and rescue operations to locate the missing Malaysia Airlines flight.
Earlier today, the navy sent its Submarine Support and Rescue Vessel (SSRV) MV Swift Rescue to join in the mission. 

“Deploying with a complement of naval divers and medical personnel, MV Swift Rescue is equipped to perform underwater searches and can assist in the search and locate operations,” RSN said in its Facebook page. 

The 11-year-old Boeing took off at 12.40 am from Kuala Lumpur International Airport and was last heard from at 1.30 am.

The plane had last contact with air traffic controllers 120 nautical miles off the east coast of Kota Baru. 

A massive search operation was under way in the seas between Malaysia and the southern tip of Vietnam, centred on the area where the plane last made contact.

New Straits Times


Sharizat Hopes For Miracle To Happen
SEPANG: Wanito Umno chief Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil calls on all Malaysians to continue praying for the missing passengers of MH370 and hope for a miracle to happen.
"Along with the family members and friends of the passengers, Malaysians must also continue to keep them in their prayers.

"At this point after more than 24 hours since reports of the missing flight, lets us all hope and pray for a miracle to happen," she told reporters at the Anjung Tinjau, here earlier.

Further, she reaffirmed that social media users should stop speculating of baseless news and information on the missing jetliner.

"Be a responsible user and wait for official information from the relevant authorities before spreading news on social networking sites.

"My deepest sympathy to family members and friends of the passengers, I hope that they remain strong and keep calm until the government and MAS gives official information on the situation," she said, adding that, they should not give up on the authorities and not be detered by any hearsay.

The Wanita Umno in 191 division will conduct a "solat hajat" for the passengers today.

New Straits Times


Police Not Ruling Out Any Possibilities: IGP

KEMAMAN: Police have not classified terrorism attack behind the disappearance of MH370 but not ruling out any possibilities, said IGP Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar.
However, police will investigate all angles on the missing MH370 and obtain CCTV footage at KLIA, he said.

New Straits Times

Australians' Thoughts With Those On Missing Mas Flight: Abbott
MELBOURNE : Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Australians' thoughts were with the passengers and families of those on a missing China-bound Malaysia Airlines aircraft.
Queensland couples Catherine and Robert Lawton and Mary and Rodney Burrows, and Sydneysiders Li Yuan and Gu Naijun, are among 239 people on board flight MH370, which disappeared said to be between Malaysia's east coast and southern Vietnam. 

Abbott on Sunday described the tragedy as a "horrible, horrible business". 

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the passengers and their families on that ill-fated aircraft, particularly to the six Australian passengers and their families, that have now been confirmed to be on board," he was quoted by the Australian Associated Press as saying to reporters in Adelaide. 

We're looking at ways in which we can help with the search and recovery operation." 

Echoing Abbott's comments, Opposition leader Bill Shorten said: "I believe the Australian nation's thoughts go out to the families of those Australians and New Zealanders that are on this plane, and indeed the families of everyone." 

MAS Flight MH370 went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing after taking off from KLIA at 12.41 am Saturday. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am.


Bernama


Fears For Chinese Missing Abroad MAS Flight
BEIJING : The families of missing Chinese passengers and web users across the country expressed fears Sunday for their relatives and compatriots on board missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
More than 24 hours after the airplane vanished from radar screens, the disappearance was the top topic on Sina Weibo, a Chinese equivalent of Twitter.

According to the airline 153 Chinese citizens were among the passengers, which was a codeshare with China Southern Airlines, accounting for more than half those on board.

If the loss of the aircraft is confirmed it would be one China’s second worst air disaster, and the worst globally since 2001.

A widely circulated post on China’s hugely popular messaging app WeChat read: “MH370, we hope the radar can see you. If you copy, keep flying at your current height until you reach your destination.

“We’ll clear the way for you. Everybody is more than happy to let you be the first to land.

“The sky is clear, with temperature in Beijing at five degrees Celsius, a little bit cold. Please wear your coats to keep warm.

“Remember to hug your family and friends after you disembark. They love you, they really do.” 

The Chinese passengers included a group of artists who had taken part in a painting and calligraphy exhibition in Kuala Lumpur, reports say.

At a hotel in Beijing friends and relatives of those on board waited for news, many of them looking tired and worried.

Malaysia Airlines has dispatched teams of counsellors and staff to help, but several family members have criticised its handling of the disappearance and a lack of information.

A middle-aged woman who gave her surname as Nan held back tears as a pack of reporters surrounded her.

Her husband’s brother was on the flight, returning from a business trip, and she took a train to Beijing from Shanghai after she found out on Saturday afternoon.

“The airline company didn’t contact me, it was a friend,” she said. “I can’t understand the airline company. They should have contacted the families first thing.

“I don’t have any news. I’m very worried, my family member was there.” 

Another middle-aged woman, Peng Keqing, told reporters that her husband’s sister, who had been working in Singapore, was on board.

“We’ve just been waiting,” she said. “We arrived last night. We didn’t get any direct notice, I checked the information online.”
AFP

US NTSB Sends Team To Investigate Malaysia Airlines Crash
KUALA LUMPUR: The US National Transportation Safety Board said it has dispatched a team to Asia to help investigate the crash of a Malaysia Airlines jet early yesterday that is presumed to have claimed 239 lives.
The NTSB team is accompanied by technical advisers from the US Federal Aviation Administration, the US air safety regulator and Boeing Co, which made the 777-200ER jet that was lost while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
“Once the aircraft location is identified, International Civil Aviation Organisation protocols will determine which country will lead the investigation,” the NTSB said.
Because of the travel time to Asia, the team departed from the United States lasty night so it could be in place to assist without delay, the NTSB said.

Reuters

Malaysia Probing Two More Passengers On Missing Flight, Says Source
KUALA LUMPUR:  Malaysian authorities are investigating the identities of at least two other passengers on a missing Malaysia Airlines flight, in addition to two who were found to be using stolen passports, a security official said.

Investigators were verifying the identities with the relevant embassies in Malaysia, said the official, who has knowledge of the investigation and declined to be identified. The passengers being checked had all bought their tickets through China Southern Airlines, the official said.
The flight carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew was presumed to have crashed off the Vietnamese coast yesterday, after losing contact with air traffic controllers off the eastern Malaysia coast.

Reuters

MAS To Set Up Command Centre At Nearest Location To Plane Once Found
KUALA LUMPUR:Malaysia Airlines (MAS) is to set up a command centre in Kota Baru, Kelantan or Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, as soon as the location of its missing aircraft is established, the airline said today.
The national carrier also said in a statement on its website that in fearing for the worst, a disaster recovery management specialist from Atlanta, United States, would assist the airline “in this crucial time”.
The airline said it was doing its utmost to provide support, including immediate financial aid, to the family members of the passengers.
MAS Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers of 14 nationalities and 12 crew, disappeared from radar over the South China Sea en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on Saturday.
The Boeing 777-200ER had taken off at 12.41am from the KL International Airport and went missing at about 1.30 am. It was to have landed in Beijing at 6.30am.
The airline said it would also deploy another set of caregivers to Beijing later today.
MAS has deployed a team of 94 caregivers consisting of well-trained staff and also Tzu Chi Foundation members to provide emotional support to the families of the passengers.
Bernama

Lam Thye Hopes Rescue Mission Will Be Successful
KUALA LUMPUR: National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (Niosh) chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye called on all Malaysians to pray for the safety of all passengers and crew on board the missing MH370 aircraft.
He expressed hope that the on-going search and rescue efforts carried out by the respective authorities including those from foreign countries would be successful.

“I hope the families of the passengers would remain calm and also pray for the safety of all their loved ones.

“I believe various agencies and the relevant parties concerned are doing their best under every circumstances to locate the missing MH370 aircraft, passengers and crew and find out what actually happened,” he said in a statement, today. 

He added that this is the time for all Malaysians to rally behind the various authorities in managing this crisis and also to give their fullest sympathy, moral and spiritual support to the families concerned. 

The MH370 flight, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members, was reported missing from the air space between Malaysia and Vietnam over the South China Sea at 2.40am yesterday.

The plane had left Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am and lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control Centre at about 2.40 am. It was to have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am (Beijing time).

New Straits Times

MAS To Set Up Command Centre In Kelantan, Vietnam

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) will set up a command centre at Kota Baru, Malaysia or Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam as soon as the location of the aircraft is established and the airline will make the necessary arrangements.
In a statement at 9.30am today, MAS said the airline was continuously working with the authorities in providing assistance. 

“In fearing for the worst, a disaster recovery management specialist from Atlanta, USA will be assisting Malaysia Airlines in this crucial time,” it said.

It said more than 24 hours after the lost of contact with Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, the search and rescue teams were still unable to detect the whereabouts of the missing aircraft.

It added that the airline was doing its utmost to provide support to the affected family members, including immediate financial aid.

“The airline has deployed a team of 94 caregivers consisting of well-trained staff and also Tzu Chi Foundation members to provide emotional support to the families. 

“The airline will also be deploying another set of caregivers to Beijing later today.

“Last night, a Malaysia Airlines’ Senior Management team arrived at Beijing to address the media and met with family members. 

“They also met families of affected passengers in Kuala Lumpur,” it said. 

The MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, was reported missing somewhere between Malaysian and Vietnamese airspace over the South China Sea at 2.40 am. 

The B777-200 aircraft had left Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am and was scheduled to land in Beijing at 6.30 am.

It lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40 am.
New Straits Times

Hishammuddin: Pray For Positive Developments In SAR Mission
KUALA LUMPUR: Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein in his tweet calls for members of the public to pray for positive developments in the search and rescue (SAR) mission of the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) MH370 plane.
“I am on my way to the OCC (operations coordination centre) in KLIA (Kuala Lumpur International Airport).

“Let’s all pray there will be positive developments in our search and rescue efforts today,” he said. 

The government had set up the OCC, headed by DCA's director general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman and all information relating to the missing MH370 would be channelled through it.

The Beijing bound MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, was reported missing somewhere between Malaysian and Vietnamese airspace over the South China Sea at 2.40 am. 

The B777-200 aircraft had left Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am and was scheduled to land in Beijing at 6.30 am.

It lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40 am.

New Straits Times
Plane Didn't Transmit Abnormalities Before Losing Contact
SEPANG: The Boeing 777-200 that went missing early yesterday morning did not transmit any abnormalities before the ground control centre in Subang lost contact with it.
Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) Director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman also confirmed that sightings of the fuel slicks out at the South China Sea was unverified.

He said the search and rescue (SAR) effort mounted yesterday went on throughout the night, with the use of vessels.

However, the mission made little progress as they have not traced any wreckage or debris afloat.

SAR operations with three aircraft, he said, resumed at 7am this morning.

Azharuddin also reconfirmed that the plane had disappeared from radar detection at about 1.30am, roughly an hour after it took off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA)

“We had to verify with other air traffic control centres in neighbouring countries to confirm the disappearance. That is why it took some time to make the confirmation,” he told a press conference this morning.

He said investigations behind the disappearance was on-going and would “would cover all angles”, including the possibility that there was foul play, given the suspicious circumstances around the use of two missing passports from Austria and Italy.

He said DCA had also obtained documents related to the aircraft’s maintenance history. 

On reports that the plane was involved in a collision in 2010, he said “we are investigating, we have secured all the records from Malaysia Airlines (MAS).”

New Straits Times
Health Team Attends To Traumatised Family Members Of Passengers
PUTRAJAYA: A health team has been stationed at The Everly Hotel here to handle cases of trauma involving family members of passengers on board the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight that went missing en route to Beijing on Saturday.
A member of the team who declined to be identified said the 25 doctors and nurses in the team worked in batches of five for six hours each. 

"Our task is to calm down the traumatised family members, and we have had to attend to a few of them," he told Bernama Sunday. 

He said the health team was despatched to the hotel after some of the family members experienced extreme trauma. 

"We were informed that they underwent the trauma at the KL International Airport (KLIA) and were transferred (to the hotel) here to prevent the situation from worsening. Some of them lost consciousness," he added.

Another member of the health team, a medical officer, said the family members of the passengers were transferred to the hotel to keep them away from reporters.

Meanwhile, a MAS employee said almost all the family members of the passengers were being accommodated at The Everly Hotel here.

The employee said family members of every passenger of Flight MH370 had been asked to bring along their passports. They were scheduled to be flown to an undisclosed destination.

The MAS Boeing 777-200 ER bound for Beijing had left KLIA at 12.41 am on Saturday and went missing about two hours later over the South China Sea. 

It was carrying 227 passengers of 14 nationalities and 12 crew. The plane was to have landed in the Chinese capital city at 6.30 am (Beijing time).

Bernama

DCA: No Sign Of Anomaly On MH370
SEPANG: The Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane, which disappeared en route to Beijing, did not show any signs of anomaly, Department of Civil Aviation Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said today.
When asked if the system in place would have notified authorities if there had been any abnormality, he answered, “Yes.”
“No, there was no sign of anomaly on the aircraft,” he told reporters here at the Sama Sama Hotel here.
He also clarified that the family members of passengers on board MH370 are not being flown to the “site” as reported by the media yesterday.
A man whose brother was on board yesterday told The Malay Mail Online that he was told by MAS to get his passport and have two family members on standby as they would be taken to the site.
He was told to be at the holding area by 6pm yesterday.
However, there has not been any announcement by MAS and efforts to obtain confirmation yesterday from the airline also proved futile.

The Malay Mail Online

US Examining Possible Terror Links As Cause For MH370 Disappearance, Say Reports
KUALA LUMPUR: Reports suggest that US authorities are now leaning towards the possibility that the disappearance of flight MH370 might have been caused by a mid-air explosion.
It is understood that Interpol officers may be invited to help with investigations as US officials review possible terror links in connection with a missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane, a US federal law enforcement official was quoted by USA Today as saying yesterday.
The unnamed official said there has been no immediate determination of what caused the plane to lose contact, adding it would likely take some time to reach any conclusions because of the lack of evidence.
He added that authorities have been reviewing the passenger manifest list and crosschecking the names with their international colleagues.
Speculation of a terror connection is also brewing in China, according to reports from local media.
The news comes as Italian and Austrian officials said two people listed as passengers on the flight turned out not to be on the plane, and had reported their passports stolen in Thailand.
In an earlier USA Today report, an aviation lawyer, who had worked on cases with problems similar to the MAS incident, was quoted as saying that the lack of warnings about a problem aboard the aircraft suggested a catastrophic failure while flying at altitude.

Steve Marks, a partner at Podhurst Orseck law firm in Miami, represented relatives of victims in the SilkAir crash in December 1997 and the Air France crash in the Atlantic in June 2009.
He speculated that the catastrophic failure was due to the plane breaking up, from a lack of pressurisation or from a complete electrical failure.
MAS confirmed early yesterday morning that MH370 lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control at about 2.40am, some two hours after the flight left from KLIA.
It was later clarified that the plane disappeared from the radar screen even earlier at 1.30am, when the plane was hovering about 120 nautical miles off Kota Baru.

The Malay Mail Online
Medical Team Attends To Traumatised MH370 Next-Of-Kin

PUTRAJAYA: A health team has been stationed at The Everly Hotel here to handle cases of trauma involving family members of passengers aboard a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight that went missing en route to Beijing yesterday.
A member of the team who declined to be identified said the 25 doctors and nurses in the team worked in batches of five for six hours each.
“Our task is to calm down the traumatised family members, and we have had to attend to a few of them,” he told Bernama today.
He said the health team was despatched to the hotel after some of the family members experienced extreme trauma.
“We were informed that they underwent the trauma at the KL International Airport (KLIA) and were transferred (to the hotel) here to prevent the situation from worsening. Some of them lost consciousness,” he added.
Another member of the health team, a medical officer, said the family members of the passengers were transferred to the hotel to keep them away from reporters.
Meanwhile, a MAS employee said almost all the family members of the passengers were being accommodated at The Everly Hotel here.

The employee said two family members of every passenger of Flight MH370 had been asked to bring along their passports. They were scheduled to be flown to an undisclosed destination.
The MAS Boeing 777-200 ER bound for Beijing had left KLIA at 12.41am yesterday and went missing about two hours later over the South China Sea.
It was carrying 227 passengers of 14 nationalities and 12 crew. The plane was to have landed in the Chinese capital city at 6.30am (Beijing time).

Bernama
US Firm Says 20 Employees On Missing MH370 Plane
WASHINGTON: A Texas semiconductor firm yesterday that 20 of its employees were confirmed passengers aboard a missing Malaysia Airlines jet that has abruptly vanished.

Among the Freescale Semiconductor employees aboard Flight MH370 were 12 people from Malaysia and another eight from China, president and CEO Gregg Lowe said.
“At present, we are solely focused on our employees and their families,” he added in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected by this tragic event.”
Rescuers were still hunting for the whereabouts of the twin-engine plane that was carrying 239 people aboard as it travelled from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing more than 24 hours after it slipped off radar screens somewhere between Malaysia’s east coast and southern Vietnam, triggering an international search effort.
The 153 Chinese passengers aboard the plane included an infant, while 38 Malaysians and seven Indonesians were aboard.
Six Australians, five Indians, four French nationals and three Americans, including an infant, were also among those listed and the Dutch Foreign Ministry said one Dutch passenger was on the plane.
“The entire Freescale Semiconductor community is deeply saddened by this news. The company is continuing to monitor the situation and will provide more information as it becomes available,” the Austin, Texas-based firm said.
Freescale said it was making counselors and other professionals available to employees as part of “around-the-clock support for those impacted by this tragedy.”
The company’s products serve the automotive, consumer, industrial and networking markets.
They include microprocessors, microcontrollers and sensors, as well as analog integrated circuits and connectivity.
Freescale has design, research and development, manufacturing and sales operations around the world.
AFP

Meteorologist: Main Weather Concern Building Seas As Search For MH370 Continues
KUALA LUMPUR: As the search continues for Malaysia Airlines (MAS) MH370, the main weather concern will be building seas, Fox News reports.
The search, however, will benefit from a lack of rain and thunderstorms as unusually dry weather persists across the southern South China Sea and the neighbouring Gulf of Thailand.
“The Malay Peninsula has been in the midst of a severe drought since the beginning of the year,” AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Anthony Sagliani was quoted by the news portal as saying.
However, Fox News reports that building seas are expected through tomorrow with a stiff northeasterly breeze in place. Wave heights may reach heights of one to two metres across the southern South China Sea.
Skies were mainly clear across the South China Sea and Gulf of Thailand when MH370’s last known position was recorded. Lightning detection maps obtained by AccuWeather.com indicate the area was free of thunderstorms.
According to AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Alan Reppert, there was some light rain and snow falling over South and Central China at the time the plane went missing.
MAS confirmed early yesterday morning that MH370 lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control at about 2.40am, some two hours after the flight left from KLIA.
It was later clarified that the plane disappeared from the radar screen even earlier at 1.30am, when the plane was hovering about 120 nautical miles off Kota Baru.
The Beijing-bound aircraft was carrying 239 passengers onboard, including 12 crew members and two infants.
The Malay Mail Online

Malaysia Airlines 'Go Team' Arrives In Beijing
BEIJING: The Malaysia Airlines (MAS) 'Go Team', comprising 93 caretakers and volunteers, has arrived in Beijing to provide emotional support and assistance to family members of passengers in MH370 which went missing early yesterday.
The team, which departed Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 4.30pm, arrived at Beijing International Airport at 10.45pm Saturday, MAS spokesperson, Ignatius Ong told a press conference here at 1.30am Sunday. 

"We are closely monitoring the situation here in Beijing as most of the passengers onboard are Chinese," he said.

Ong reiterated the airline failed to find any wreckage so far, but the search and rescue efforts were still being carried out.

He also said MAS was currently working closely with authorities from Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore and the navy from the United States and China on the search and rescue efforts.

Ong added that MAS would fly the next-of-kin of passengers to the location when the aircraft was to be found, and all the expenses would be borne by the national carrier (MAS).

The MH370 aircraft from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, which carried 227 passengers and 12 crew members, disappeared from the radar screen after taking off from the KL International Airport at 12.41am. It should have landed in Beijing at 6.30am.
Bernama

A Nation Comes Together In Prayer
KUALA LUMPUR: MALAYSIANS joined hands in hope and prayer yesterday as news broke that a Malaysia Airlines aircraft to Beijing, with 239 people on board, had gone missing somewhere along its flight path.
MAS flight MH370 had taken off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 12.40am and was supposed to land in Beijing at 6.30am. At 1.30am, however, air traffic controllers lost contact with the Boeing 777-200ER with 227 passengers and 12 crew aboard, its last position putting it somewhere over the South China Sea.
Immediate investigations were conducted but no trace was found of MH370. Confusion reigned as news of the disappearance became widely known.
MAS began informing the next of kin of crew members and passengers about 8am, bringing most of them to KLIA. The airline also began mobilising support groups for family members of the crew and passengers.
Meanwhile, a massive multi-nation search and rescue (SAR) operation was launched. Eventually, it would include at least 11 Royal Malaysian Air Force fixed-wing aircraft and four helicopters, two army helicopters, two Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency aircraft, six Royal Malaysian Navy and three MMEA ships joining a search and rescue operation with the help of several nations.
Among the ships and aircraft helping SAR operations were those from Vietnam, Singapore, the Philippines, China, the United States and Thailand.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak told a packed press conference that SAR operations would be carried out "for as long as necessary". He said the operation, which had initially centred around the area where contact with the aircraft was lost, would be expanded after an initial search turned up nothing.
Later, foreign wire agencies reported that Vietnamese Air Force aircraft had spotted oil slicks off the southern tip of Vietnam. As of press time, however, no confirmation could be obtained as to whether these reports were true or whether, if true, the oil slicks were from the missing aircraft.
Throughout the day, social media websites were abuzz with news of the disappearance of MH370, as Malaysians from all walks of life and in every part of the world joined in solidarity, the hashtag #PrayForMH370 becoming a familiar sight, the outpouring of love and support overwhelming.
Rumours abounded, making the situation even more confusing and causing even more frustration to already distressed family members. And, the tears flowed freely.
Among the rumours were that the aircraft had made an emergency landing in another airport in China, that it had crashed into hilly terrain in Vietnam and that the Vietnamese Navy had detected its emergency beacon in waters off its coast.
So intense were the rumours, so large the confusion they caused, that acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein had to implore that those following the situation stop believing in such speculation, a call repeated later by Najib.
The rumours and confusion they caused, the frustrations of not being able to do anything but wait and other factors led to tempers flaring, including in Beijing, where the kin of the 150-odd Chinese citizens aboard the flight had gathered.
At least one member of the media was assaulted by a family member in China as emotions boiled over.
At KLIA, Najib and his deputy, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, were on hand to show their support to family members of passengers and crew. Missing from those there, thankfully for them, were family members of Jessie Yee Wai Ching, a Malaysian studying in China.
Here for a break, Yee was supposed to have been on MH370 but told Astro Awani she had mistakenly thought the flight was to take off the following day.
She said she had mixed feelings about what had happened -- happy and thankful she had missed the flight, but at the same felt sorry for the affected family members.
Asked whether she would change her mind about flying after the disappearance of MH370, Yee said she was flying back to Beijing tomorrow on a flight scheduled for the same time.
"I feel it was fated (that I did not get on that plane). I feel I have been given a second chance."

New Straits Times

Co-Pilot Family Awaits For Latest Updates
SHAH ALAM: The family of the co-pilot of the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) aircraft which went missing enroute to Beijing this morning, is waiting at home for news on Flight MH370.
A close relative of Fariq Abdul Hamid, 27, who declined to be identified said the airlines had asked the next-of-kin of passengers and crew to wait at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) but they preferred to wait at home.
"MAS has informed all next-of-kin of passengers and crew members to be present at KLIA but so long as we are not getting the latest news from MAS, we will just wait at home.
"We obtained some information on the missing plane this morning," he said when met at Fariq's house in Jalan Platinum 7/56, Section 7 here today.
Fariq, the youngest son of Selangor Public Works Department deputy director Abdul Hamid Mad Daud, has recorded more than 2,763 hours of flying time. He began his career with MAS in 2007.
Meanwhile, Abdul Hamid declined to meet the media which had gathered in front of his house for comments.
The aircraft flown by Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, left Kuala Lumpur at 12.41am and was scheduled to land at the Beijing International Airport at 6.30am (Beijing time) with 239 people onboard, including 12 crew members.

Bernama

3 Americans On Missing MAS Airliner
WASHINGTON: Three Americans were aboard a Malaysia Airlines jet that went missing off the coast of Vietnam, a US State Department official said Saturday.
“At this time, we can confirm that three US citizens were on board,” the official said in a statement.
“Officials from the US embassies in Kuala Lumpur and Beijing are in contact with the individuals’ families,” the official said, adding that Washington is “working to assess whether additional US citizens may have been on board the flight”.
“We extend our deepest condolences to the loved ones of those on board Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370,” the official continued, adding that the US government is not providing additional information about the Americans on the missing flight “out of respect for them”.
Rescue planes on Saturday were searching for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet, which was carrying 239 passengers.
Officials in Vietnam have said two large oil slicks have been spotted, the first possible sign that the missing twin-engine Boeing 777 jetliner could have gone down somewhere in the waters between southern Vietnam and northern Malaysia.
AFP


Families In Shock
ALOR STAR: The family of Seremban-based computer programmer Jee Jing Hang, 41, had a shock of their life upon learning the devastating news that the Malaysia Airlines MH370 gone missing morning.
His brother Jing Hong, 42, said the family had learnt about the incident from television news and had immediately contacted the airliner for verification.
"I had left my contact number with MAS management and they promised to keep me posted.
"In the meantime, we are monitoring the situation from news report broadcasted on television, online portal and radio with other relatives from far and near who came over to lend their support.
"We will leave to Kuala Lumpur as soon as we got confirmation on the fate of the aircraft," he said when met at his parents’ house at Taman Rasa Sayang, Jitra.
Jing Hong said his brother, a divorcee with two children aged 11 and 13, had contacted their mother about 11pm Saturday before departing to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).
However, Jing Hang did not specify the reason for the trip.
The MAS B777-200 aircraft had lost contact with Subang Air Traffic control two hours after departure from Kuala Lumpur, at about 2.40am.
Meanwhile, another passenger from Kedah is identified as Maybank staff Chew Kar Mooi, 31.
Chew, who was recently transferred to Maybank branch in Kuala Lumpur, was leaving to Beijing on work visit.
Chew's mother, Tan Duan Li, 55, recounted that she was informed by her daughter that the trip was scheduled on March 6.
"I had no idea that she was on board the missing aircraft as she told me previously that she was leaving to Beijing on Thursday.
"I was shocked when her elder sister called me this (yesterday) morning to inform me that Chew had texted her before she departed last night (Friday).
"My two other children had gone to Kuala Lumpur to get the latest update on the search and rescue mission," she said when met at the family home in Kerpan.
Another Kedah-born on board the aircraft is Mohd Sofuan Ibrahim who is scheduled to report for duty at the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti) branch office in Beijing.
The 33-year-old attaché hails from Jalan Kota Tanah here.
A close family friend, who declined to be named said Sofuan's parents had left to Kuala Lumpur two days ago and sent him to Kuala Lumpur International Airport last night.

New Straits Times

MFA Closely Monitoring Status Of Missing Plane
SINGAPORE : The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) says it is closely monitoring the status of a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) aircraft which has been reported missing today.
In a statement in response to media queries on the whereabouts of Flight MH370, an MFA spokesman said the ministry had been in touch with MAS and confirmed no Singaporean was onboard the flight.

He said Singaporeans who required consular assistance should contact the MFA Duty Office (24-hours) or the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur at tel: 63798800, 63798855 (24 hours) and Fax: 6476-7302.

The spokesman added, Singapore’s thoughts and prayers were with the passengers and crew of the missing aircraft, and their families.

The Singapore Rescue Coordination Centre has been activated and an aircraft sent to help in the Search And Locate efforts.

Bernama

Search And Rescue Efforts Continue Off Kelantan Coast
KELANTAN: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) will focus its search and rescue effort for the missing MH370 aircraft near its last known location off the Kelantan coast here.
This came after rescuers found a small canvas floating there.
MMEA director-general Datuk Amdan Kurish said the object was spotted by aircraft crews involved in the SAR mission.
He said the rescuers, who made the finding in the afternoon search, initially thought that the object was a life jacket.
Rescuers onboard a vessel then picked the small canvas.
It was learnt that they are still trying to ascertain if the canvas came from the missing Malaysian Airlines.
"Tomorrow, we will give more focus on the areas nearby the location where we found the canvas.
"We will also expand the areas of search, based on estimation made from wind and sea current readings, " he told the NST at the Gong Kedak Air Force base, here, last night.
He said MMEA have covered a 50 nautical miles radius from the MH370's last known location since they started operation at 11.30am Saturday.
He said another MMEA amphibious aircraft will join the SAR mission today, as an addition to the agency's three helicopters and an amphibious aircraft team that had already been deployed.
"We are also hoping that the good weather will continue tomorrow (Sunday).
"So far, the SAR mission is running smoothly, " he said.

-NST Online

Gong Kedak Base Abuzz With Activities
KELANTAN: Search and rescue mission by air to find the missing MH370 was conducted relentlessly by air crews from multiple agencies based in Gong Kedak Air Force here last night.
Using helicopters and light aircrafts, rescuers from the Air Force and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency flew to their respective operation areas about 120km off the Kelantan coast here in a continuous efforts to locate the missing Malaysian Airlines plane around its last known location at the South China sea.
The NST was given the opportunity to observe SAR operations at the air base, and saw the helicopters and aircrafts departing and arriving according to their mission schedule.
It is learnt that MMEA are using three helicopters (two AW139 and a Dolphin), and an amphibious CL415 aircraft.
The Air Force deployed two EC725 helicopters, and these helicopters also carried Paskau commandos clad in complete diving gears for quick rescue should they manage to locate the MH370.
At least one of the Air Force's Beechcraft King Air 200 was also deployed for the mission.
A Beechcraft King Air 350i, belongs to the police's Air Wing unit, was also seen refuelling at the air base about 7pm.
It then departed shortly after refuelling, believed to be heading to the operation area to continue their mission.
The NST was told that the total of 15 aircrafts involved in the SAR mission were divided into several search sectors, which had been widened in stages.
The search areas and their sizes are being coordinated by the incident's Search Mission Coordinator based in Subang.
Sources told the NST that the search party had yet to find any sign of the plane's wreckage.
They, however, found a yellow cloth, initially thought to be a life jacket's cover.
However, checks found that it was not.


NST Online

Malaysia Widens Search Area For MAS Airliner
SEPANG: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today the search for a missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) aircraft would be widened as nothing was found in the area where contact with the plane was lost.
"We have not found any wreckage," he told a news conference after MAS Flight MH370 went missing over the South China Sea at 2.40 am when flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board.
Najib said it was decided to widen the area of the search following a discussion among him, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein and heads of agencies involved in the search-and-rescue operation.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with all the affected passengers and crew as well as for their family members," he said.
The prime minister said more aircraft and ships had been deployed to conduct the search.
Najib said that at this point he did not have any more information to offer because "we have not found anything yet".
"It is too early to come to any conclusion because we are looking at all possibilities. Some theories have been put forward but they will remain just that until we have concrete evidence," he said.
The prime minister said Vietnam had confirmed that it had not found any wreckage as reported earlier, and he rejected all kinds of theories, including the element of terrorism.
"It is too early to make any conclusive remarks," he stressed.
Najib said Malaysia Airlines was focusing on providing emotional support to the families of the passengers, both in Kuala Lumpur and Beijing.
Some 100 staff of Malaysia Airlines were on their way to Beijing to meet the families and provide whatever assistance they could, he said.


New Straits Times

US Seventh Fleet Sends Ship To Assist In Search Efforts Of Missing MH370

SOUTH CHINA SEA: USS Pinckney, an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer conducting training and maritime operations in the South China Sea, is en route to the southern coast of Vietnam to assist in search efforts of the missing Malaysia Airlines flight.
The ship could be in vicinity of the missing jet within 24 hours and carries two MH-60R helicopters which can be equipped for search and rescue, said a statement from the US Seventh Fleet Public Affairs department.
A P-3C Orion aircraft will also depart from Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, Japan bringing long-range search, radar and communications capabilities to the efforts.


The Malay Mail Online

12-Mile Oil Slick First Sign Of Missing Aircraft
KUALA LUMPUR: As night falls and search and rescue efforts for the missing MH370 grow increasingly futile, reports are now streaming in of an alleged sighting of a 12-mile (19.3km) long oil slick in the waters between Malaysia and Vietnam.
According to the New York Times’ report from Hong Kong, the oil slick could be the first sign that the Boeing B777-200 aircraft carrying 239 people had indeed gone down in the sea off the coast of Vietnam.
“An AN26 aircraft of the Vietnam Navy has discovered an oil slick about 20 kilometres in the search area, which is suspected of being a crashed Boeing aircraft — we have announced that information to Singapore and Malaysia and we continue the search,” Lai Xuan Thanh, the director of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam was reported as saying in the news report.
Thanh reportedly said the oil slick looked closer to Vietnam than it did to Malaysia.
It has been over 20 hours since the plane last communicated with the Subang Air Traffic Control, and many continue to speculate the plane has crashed in the Gulf of Thailand, some 250km south of Vietnam.
The last coordinates where the aircraft was last heard at 1.30am this morning from puts it somewhere 120 nautical miles off Kota Baru.

The Malay Mail Online

Hisham: No Confirmation Of Alleged Boeing 777 - MH370 Crash In Vietnam Waters
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian authorities said there is yet to be an official confirmation on the veracity of reports that the KL-Beijing flight MH370 flight have crashed into the sea 246 kilometres off Tho Chu Island in Vietnam.
Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein today said that the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and the Foreign Minister have confirmed the reports to be, so far untrue.
“That’s enough. We are awaiting a confirmation from our military and we are contacting the navy in Vietnam to get a confirmation, we expect that in a few hours,” Hishammuddin told a press conference.
Hishammuddin said that there is no information yet on the Boeing 777-200 plane or any wreckage found at sea.
“At this point, we have not received any information of any wreckage at sea or any information that this is related to a terrorist act,” he said. “In any case, we are not ruling out any possibilities," he added.
The DCA is expected to give two-hour updates via press conferences at the KLIA airport.
MAS has contacted 80 percent of the passengers' family members and Hishammuddin also urged the public to stop spreading rumours regarding the missing aircraft.
It has been more than 9 hours since the plane lost contact with air traffic control. Vietnam and China are also helping in the search efforts.
Earlier, there were rumours saying that authorities had detected the signal of the missing plane and that it had crashed into the ocean.
The plane lost contact with Subang Air Traffic Control, between 1-2 hours after takeoff at 2.40am earlier today.
The flight was carrying a total number of 239 passengers (including 2 infants) from 14 different nations and 12 crew members.

Awani

Why Is There Still No Confirmation On MH370?

KUALA LUMPUR: The fate of the Boeing 777-200 aircraft belonging to Malaysia Airlines (MAS) from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing which has been missing since early Saturday morning is still unconfirmed.
What had befallen the airplane that was carrying some 239 passengers and crew had already been speculated by many who started off their weekend with this shocking news.
Most media reports had said the aircraft is believed to have crashed in the South China Sea, based on the last known coordinates of the plane traced via its flight communications system.
But why are the authorities not confirming such reports?
“For sure, anyone can say in general that the plane had crashed landed but if it did, where is the wreckage?
“Only if a wreckage has been discovered can we declare the craft as having been crashed,” an aviation expert told Astro AWANI.
The expert, who wants to remain anonymous, has had years of experience in traffic control and search and rescue operations.
The MH370 flight had cut off all communications with the Subang Air Traffic Control Centre at about 2.40am, early Saturday, two hours after it took off from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA). It was carrying 239 passengers, including two babies and 12 crews, from 14 countries. It was supposed to land at the Beijing International Airport at 6.30am.
Asked on how the plane could have disappeared from the radar, the expert explained that there was a big possibility that the plane was flying at a low altitude, less than 500 feet above sea level.
“There are two types of radars that are being used; primary surveillance radar and secondary surveillance radar,” said the source.
The primary surveillance radar can only measure the reach and the compass direction by tracking the a blinking signal on the screen. The secondary surveillance radar, on the other hand, not only detects the same information but it is able to detect other information such as flight height and the identity of the aircraft.
The expert added that although communications with the traffic control centre was lost, the location of the aircraft can still be traced if it crashed because it was equipped with a emergency locator beacon that will emit a signal during a crash.
“This system is water proof. Meaning, if the plane were to crash into the sea it would be traceable,” he said.
He explained that once the airplane hits either the ground or the surface of water, the system will automatically issue the signal.
Among aviation industry observers, the MH370 is reminiscent of the Air France Airbus 330-203 tragedy where the plane crashed into the sea off Rio de Janeiro on June 1, 2009. Its wreckage was only found two years later.
The MH370 was piloted by Captain Zaharia Ahmad Shah, 53, who has logged 18,365 flight hours experience. He joined MAS in 1981. Zaharia was assisted by First Officer Fariq Ab Hamid, 27, who joined MAS in 2007.

Awani

Boeing Offers 'Deepest Concern' Over Flight MH370
KUALA LUMPUR: Boeing has expressed sympathies to the families those aboard flight MH370, the Boeing 777 that disappeared from radar and has been 'missing' since early this morning.
“Boeing offers its deepest concern the families of those aboard missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370," the makers of the missing plane Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane said in a statement on its website today.
The plane-maker also announced that it has assembled a technical team to aid in the investigations.
“Boeing is assembling a team to provide technical assistance to investigating authorities,” it said.
Flight MH370 is a Boeing 777-2H6ER aircraft that was purchased in 2002, bearing the registration number 9M-MRO.
The Boeing was built on April 2002 and delivered to MAS on May 31, 2002, according to the database in Aviation Week, a global aviation industry service provider, making it nearly 12 years old.
MH370 was also the 404th plane to come of the 777 model production line.
The plane is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 892 engines, which most commonly powers this particular model.
The last crash involving a 777 with the same engine was on January 17, 2008. A British Airways Boeing 777-236ER flying from Beijing to London crash-landed at Heathrow airport.
Both of its Trent 800 engines lost power during the aircraft’s final approach, which investigators found were caused by ice released from the fuel system restricting oil flow to the engines.
The first fatal crash in the Boeing 777's 19-year history came in July 2013, when an Asiana Airlines jet landed short of the runway in San Francisco. Three of the 307 people aboard died, one of whom was hit by an emergency truck after surviving the crash.
Malaysia Airlines had an incident with a 777 in August 2005, when a flight from Perth to Kuala Lumpur flying 11,580 metres above the Indian Ocean shoot up 915 metres due to the plane’s software incorrectly measured speed and acceleration. However, autopilot was disengaged and the plane landed safety in Perth. The incident forced a software upgrade on planes around the world.
Despite these cases, Aviation experts have expressed surprise at the sudden loss of contact with the Boeing 777 as they said it had an 'almost flawless safety record'.

Awani

MITI Officer Among Those On Boeing 777 Flight MH370

KUALA LUMPUR: International Trade and Industry Minister, Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed has expressed his sadness over what has happened to flight MH370.
He was at KLIA to meet with the family members of MITI officer, Sofuan Ibrahim, who was on the flight to report for work at their Beijing office this Monday.
"He has been working with MITI since 2011, and he was sent to Beijing to be the Second Secretary for Economics," said Datuk Seri Mustapa.
When asked to comment if he knows the situation of the flight, Datuk Seri Mustapa just said that we should conduct 'sembahyang hajat'.
Sofuan’s close friend Mohamad Iqhfan Mohamad Yazi also expressed his deepest concern over the incident.
“I am saddened over the news of the missing plane but I have to accept any eventualities that may come out in the end,” Mohamad Iqhfan.
Sofuan was also Mohamad Iqhfan’s classmate at Sekolah Alam Shah.
MH370, a code share flight with China Southern Airlines, left KLIA for Beijing at 12:41am this morning.
All communication with the plane was lost at 2:40am and no distress signal or call was received.
The flight had registered 239 passengers, 38 of them Malaysians. It was scheduled to arrive at Beijing International Airport at 6:30am local time.
Awani






All Flight Operations At KLIA Proceeds As Normal: MAHB

All Flight Operations At KLIA Proceeds As Normal: MAHB

KUALA LUMPUR : Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) has informed that all flight operations at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) are proceeding as normal.
In a statement here today, MAHB said a support centre has been set up at Anjung Tinjau Level 5, Main Terminal Building to facilitate the handling of the family members of Flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing which went missing today.

"Our hearts go out to the families and friends of passengers onboard Flight MH370 in this period of uncertainty.

"We are doing everything we can to assist Malaysia Airlines and the famililes and friends that have come to the airport," it said.


Bernama


No Wreckage Found, Sea Mission Continues
KUALA LUMPUR: Search and rescue teams from Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam have failed to find evidence of any wreckage, Malaysia Airlines (MAS) said in a statement tonight.
“An international search and rescue mission was mobilised this morning. 

“At this stage, our search and rescue teams from Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam have failed to find evidence of any wreckage.

“The sea mission will continue while the air mission will recommence at daylight,” it said. 

It added that the families of all passengers on board MH370 were being informed of the status of the aircraft. 

The flight was carrying 239 – comprising 227 passengers (including two infants) and 12 crew members.

The passengers are of 14 different nationalities while all crew onboard were Malaysians.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected passengers and crew and their family members,” MAS said. 

The public may contact +603 7884 1234.

New Straits Times


Australian Families On Flight MH370 Contacted
MELBOURNE : Australian consular officials are in contact with the families of six Australians onboard the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370.
"Australian consular officials are currently in touch with MAS, and the families of the missing Australian passengers,"

Senator Brett Mason, parliamentary secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, was quoted by the Australian Associated Press (AAP) as telling reporters in Sydney.

"At the moment, there is no clarity as to what had occurred. But, can I just add that the families of the seven missing Australian passengers must be desperately concerned, and the thoughts of the Australian Government and I'm sure, all Australians go out to them at the moment," he said.

MAS later revised the number of missing Australians down to six.

AAP reported tonight the missing Australians included Mary and Rodney Burrows and Catherine and Robert Lawton, all from Brisbane.

The two couples were reportedly travelling together. 

Li Yuan and Gu Naijun, believed to be from Sydney, were also reported missing. 

Two New Zealanders were also onboard the flight.

New Straits Times

PM Says Still No Sign Of Missing Plane
KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak confirmed that no wreckage of the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 was found.
At a press conference held in Kuala Lumpur International Airport, he said search and rescue operation area will be extended further in the South China Sea.
Najib who met the affected family members said that they have increased the number of Royal Malaysia Air Force aircraft to 15.
This include four C130, one CM235, four EC725, one Beachcraft and one Kingair.
“We are working with other countries namely Vietnam and China to create a greater impact on the search and rescue efforts. Vietnam will carry out operation on their waters,” he said.
Najib also said he had spoken to China’s prime minister Li Keqiang.
“China would be helping in their operations as 153 Chinese passengers were onboard. Singapore also has deployed a Charlie C130 aircraft to help out in the mission.
Najib added the US Navy would also be deploying their assets for the mission.
“MAS will make arrangement for family members who want to travel to Beijing,” he said.
When asked about speculations on the missing plane, Najib said they would wait until the theories are well substantiated.
Civil Aviation Department (DCA) Director-General Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the pilot had contacted the Subang air traffic controller before the plane entered the Vietnam airspace.
“This is a usual procedure, where traffic controllers would contact pilots before entering the following country’s airspace."

New Straits Times

Search And Rescue Mission Reaches Plane's Last Known Location
KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian search and rescue mission have reached the last known location of MH370 but have so far seen no trace of the Malaysian Airlines (MAS) craft.
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) and the director of C3I (Command, Control , Communication and Information Captain Hamid Mohd Amin told Astro AWANI they had searched a 40 nautical mile radius area but have yet to uncover anything significant.
The location, he said, is 120 nautical miles east of Kota Bharu, Kelantan.
"Earlier, our aircraft spotted an object in the waters but when KM Amanah investigated we found that it was just an orange coloured canvas. It was a false alarm. We will continue search efforts," he said.
Hamid said that the search mission would now move North and East of the last known coordinates, called datum.
Among the ships that have reached the location are KM Amanah, KM Langkawi, and KD Pahang from the Royal Malaysian Navy .
A Bombardier aircraft and several military EC275 helicopters are also being used in the search and rescue operations.
The MH370 Boeing 777-200 aircraft carrying 239 passengers and crew lost contact with the Air Traffic Control Centre in Subang at 2:41 am, about two hours after takeoff. It was supposed to reach Beijing at 6.30am.
In the second wave of the operation, Hamid said the rescue teams will move KD Terengganu and several smaller vessels and aircraft Augusta .

Awani

 Missing Airliner Carrying 239 Triggers Southeast Asia Search
HANOI: Rescuers from several nations mounted an air and sea search Saturday for a Malaysia Airlines jet that has gone missing over Southeast Asia, with grave fears for the 239 people on board.
Vietnam authorities said contact with Flight MH370 was lost near its airspace, but its exact location and fate remained a mystery more than 14 hours after it slipped off air-traffic control screens.
Frustrated officials and passenger's relatives struggled to make sense of the disappearance of the Boeing 777-200 which -- like the Malaysian national carrier -- has a solid safety record.
The airline said the plane, on an overnight flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, relayed no distress signal, indications of rough weather, or other signs of trouble.
Asked whether Malaysia was looking at possible terrorism, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said the government was "looking at all possibilities."
"The plane lost contact near Ca Mau province airspace as it was preparing to transfer to Ho Chi Minh City air traffic control," the Vietnamese government said in a statement.
Ca Mau province is in southernmost Vietnam, next to the Cambodian border.
The airline said the plane's last known position was a point about 150 kilometres (93 miles) north of Malaysia's eastern coast.
The disappearance triggered a South China Sea search effort involving vessels from several nations with rival maritime claims to the region.
China, which has 153 of its nationals on the missing plane, said it had ordered maritime patrol vessels to begin scouring the area.
Vietnam's defence ministry launched a rescue mission, the government said, and a Malaysian maritime official said the country had sent several planes and vessels.
The Philippines said it was sending three navy patrol boats and a surveillance plane. Singapore dispatched an air force C130 transporter on a "search and locate mission".
It was not clear if the nations were cooperating.
Overlapping claims to the South China Sea, a resource-rich region and vital shipping lane, have been a growing source of tensions between China and its neighbours.
Contact lost after two hours
Contact with the aircraft was lost at 2:40 am Malaysian time (1840 GMT Friday), about two hours after take-off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, the carrier's CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya said.
"Our focus now is to work with emergency responders and authorities, and mobilise full support," he told a press conference, adding the airline's "thoughts and prayers" were with those affected.
If a crash is confirmed, it would be only the second fatal crash in the history of the Boeing 777, a popular wide-body model. A Boeing 777-200 operated by South Korea's Asiana Airlines skidded off the runway in San Francisco in 2013, killing three.
Indonesia-based aviation analyst Gerry Soejatman said the clock was ticking on a "24-hour golden window" for search and rescue efforts.
"You can't assume that there are no survivors, and if there are any, it is absolutely crucial that they are picked up within a day, or the chances of survival drops significantly," he said.
The plane carried 227 passengers and 12 crew members from 14 nationalities.
The 153 Chinese passengers included an infant, while 38 Malaysians and 7 Indonesians were also aboard, the airline said.
Six Australians, four French nationals, and three Americans including an infant, were also among those listed.
Malaysia Airlines has an admirable safety record. Its worst-ever crash occurred in 1977, when 93 passengers and seven crew perished in a hijacking and subsequent crash in southern Malaysia.
The pilot of MH370 had flown for the carrier since 1981, it said. The plane is more than 11 years old.
"This news has made us all very worried," Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said in Beijing.
"We hope every one of the passengers is safe. We are doing all we can to get more details."
- Distraught relatives -
Hishammuddin, the Malaysian transport minister, said he had no confirmation on the plane's fate.
He said Malaysia was pressing Hanoi for details after state media quoted a Vietnamese naval official as saying it had crashed into the sea.
The lack of information sparked fury among anguished relatives in Beijing.
"They should have told us something before now," a visibly distressed man in his 30s said at a hotel where passengers' families were asked to gather.
"They are useless," another young man said of the airline. "I don't know why they haven't released any information."
At Kuala Lumpur International Airport, distraught family members trickled in to a designated waiting area for loved ones, escorted by authorities.
Hamid Ramlan, a 56-year-old Kuala Lumpur police officer, said his daughter and son-in-law were on the flight for an intended holiday in Beijing.
"My wife is crying. Everyone is sad. My house has become a place of mourning," he said. "This is Allah's will. We have to accept it."
"Being a policeman over 33 years, this is my worst day."
An accident would be a huge blow for Malaysian Airlines, which has bled money for years as its struggles to fend off competition from rivals such as fast-growing Malaysia-based AirAsia.

Awani
Businessman Who Cancels Flight Shocked Over Missing MAS Plane
KUALA LUMPUR: A businessman who cancelled his flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing today is shocked over the news that the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 went missing.
The businessman, who wanted to be known only as Woo, said he had originally planned to join two friends on a business trip to Beijing on that flight.  
However, he was forced to cancel his visit to Beijing at the last moment because he had to go to Singapore for a more important business appointment.  
"I am still shocked over this news. But I am not sure if my two friends had flown to Beijing or Shanghai. If they had gone to Shanghai, I am sure they are safe," he said when contacted by Bernama here.
Woo said he was still waiting for the updates on the fate of his two friends as they could not be contacted.

BERNAMA

Singapore Sends Air Force Plane To Search Missing Aircraft
SINGAPORE : Singapore has sent a C130 Hercules aircraft for a search and locate mission for the missing plane of Malaysia Airlines (MAS), which carried 239 people, Xinhua news agency reported the city-state's air force as saying on Saturday.
The Boeing 777-200 aircraft, flight number MH370, departed Kuala Lumpur at 12.41am local time Saturday and was scheduled to land at Beijing International Airport at 6.30am.
The Malaysia Airlines said Subang Air Traffic Control had lost contact with the aircraft at 2.40am.    
Malaysia Airlines is still unable to establish any contact or determine the whereabouts of flight MH370, the airlines added.
"The last known position of MH370 before it disappeared off the radar was 065515 North (longitude) and 1033443 East (latitude)," it said in a statement.    
Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Saturday morning on his Facebook, "Our thoughts and prayers are with the passengers and crew, and their families."    
He updated his Facebook account in the afternoon. He said he had contacted Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to express his sympathies and concerns over the missing plane, and to offer help with the search operations.    
"Hope the plane and people on board will be found soon," he added.
Meanwhile, Vietnam has already sent aircraft and marine rescue vessels to search for the missing Malaysian plane, according to a Xinhua report datelined Hanoi.
Pham Hien, director of Vietnam's Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center (MRCC) Zone 3, said this to Xinhua on Saturday.    
The MRCC Zone 3, based in southern Vung Tau city, has deployed a specialised rescue ship SAR 413 to the waters off Vietnam where the plane was feared to have crashed to help search for the plane, Hien told Xinhua on the phone.    
Meanwhile, one AN 26 aircraft has left the Tan Son Nhat International Airport in southern Ho Chi Minh city to join the search and rescue work, Vietnamese state-run news agency quoted the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defence as saying.    
Helicopters and marine police vessels are also ready to join the search and rescue as soon as the plane is located.


BERNAMA


Welfare Department Send Counsellors To Comfort Family Members
SEPANG : The welfare department has sent a team of ten counsellors to the Anjung Tinjauan, KLIA to comfort and provide moral support to family members of passengers in the MH370 missing plane.
Welfare department Deputy Director Zulkiply Ramly said the department was deeply saddened by the unforseen incident and was ready to extend its services to help the passengers family and friends through counselling.

"The team of counselors would be here for 24 hours to console the victims family members," he said.

He said if the need arise, the welfare department would go to the victim family houses to provide them with emotional support.

"Family members who lived far from here could also seeks counselling at public universities in every state," he said.


New Straits Times
http://www.nst.com.my/latest/font-color-red-missing-mh370-font-welfare-department-send-counsellors-to-comfort-family-members-1.502772?cache=dw9hjlrei%2F7.282607%2F7.481018%2F7.480850%2F7.490557


MAS Goes All Out To Locate Missing Plane
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) is going all-out to locate its plane that went missing on a Beijing-bound flight based on the last-known position of the aircraft before it disappeared off the radar.
MAS' Executive, Media Relations and Strategic Communications Malini Saudranrajan said the last known position of the aircraft was 065515 North (longitude) and 1033443 East (latitude).  
"Malaysia Airlines is still unable to establish any contact or determine the whereabouts of flight MH370," she said in a statement.  
She said a MAS was working with the authorities and assured that all sources were deployed to assist the search-and-rescue mission.
"Our focus now is to work with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilise our full support," she said.
Malini said the passenger manifest would not be released until the families of all the passengers had been informed.
The flight was carrying a total number of 239 people, comprising 227 passengers, two of them infants, and 12 crew.
The statement also gave an update on the nationalities of the passengers on board, saying that five of the passengers were from including from India, clarifying the national carrier earlier statement.
This confusion arises due to the country code of Indonesia and India.
The updated passengers nationalities are of 14 different nationalities and all crew on-board are Malaysians.
Total: 239
Passengers: 227
Crew: 12
1) China/Taiwan : 153, including one infant / 1
2) Malaysia : 38
3) Indonesia : Seven  
4) Australia : Six
5) India : Five
6) France : Four
7) USA : Three, including one infant
8) New Zealand : Two
9) Ukraine : Two
10) Canada : Two
11) Russian : One
12) Italy : One
13) Netherlands : One
14) Austrian : One
Malini also said that MAS had deployed its 'Go Team' of caregivers and volunteers to Beijing to assist the family members of the passengers.
She said the airline would provide regular updates on the situation.
Since there were many unvalidated reports out in the media, Malaysia Airlines strongly urged the media and public at large to only report from official statements from Malaysia Airlines and the Malaysian government, she said.

Bernama


"Pray for my son"
ALOR STAR: Mohd Sofuan Ibrahim, one of the Malaysia Airlines MH370 passengers, is scheduled to report for duty at the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti) branch office in Beijing.
The 33-year-old attaché hails from Jalan Kota Tanah here.
A close family friend, who declined to be named said Sofuan's parents had left to Kuala Lumpur two days ago and sent him to Kuala Lumpur International Airport last night.
The man said he received a call from Sofuan father this morning who appealed for prayers for his safety.
"I am very close to the family and we are praying hard for the safety of Sofuan and all in on board of the flight," he said.
Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 with 238 passengers and flight crew went missing since early today after departing from KLIA.

New Straits Times
http://www.nst.com.my/latest/font-color-red-missing-mh370-font-pray-for-my-son-1.502751

Family Members Wait Anxiously
SEPANG: Dozens of anxious family members of Beijing bound Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight (MH370) passengers are hanging on for hope at a holding room in Anjung Tinjau of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) .
The group, who began arriving since noon today, were told return home and come back to the airport with valid travel documents by 6 pm.
It is uncertain where the relatives would be taken, but several of those who spoke to the media while leaving the holding room said MAS had allowed two relatives per passenger to join a flight to a yet-to-be-determined destination.
At 5pm, some 60 MAS emergency response team members were seen at the departure hall in KLIA. It is understood that they were headed to Beijing.
Media practitioner Lokman Mustafa, 40, the brother of, Suhaili, 31, a passenger on the flight said the missing family member was among a team of 15 colleagues of a semiconductor company setting a factory there.
Lokman, who works with the Ant Daily online portal said the relatives will only be flown out to a destination once the plane was found.
68-year-old Putih Idris was also among a family member of the missing 38 Malaysian passengers on the flight, said she hoped her daughter-in-law Nor Fadzillah Md Rahim, 37, was still safe.
Selangor DAP Publicity chief Ronnie Liew who turned up at KLIA at about 5pm today said his friend Stanley Wong Sai Sang, 52, was aboard the flight.
“He (Stanley) had just celebrated his birthday yesterday,” Ronnie said when met.

New Straits Times

'Don't you all have families?'
KUALA LUMPUR: AFP correspondent Neil Connor in Beijing reported seeing a man who appeared to be in his sixties entering a room, wiping tears from his eyes with a handkerchief, and punching a cameraman in the face when he tried to film him as he walked by.
At the same time a security shouted "Don't you all have families."
Hamid Ramlan, a 56-year-old policeman living in the capital Kuala Lumpur, told AFP that his daughter, 34, and son in law, 24, were on the flight.
"My wife is crying. Everyone is sad. My house has become a place of mourning. This is Allah's will. We have to accept it. But we will from tonight hold special prayers for Allah's help. I want to see my daughter and her husband who were on the flight to Beijing for a holiday," he says.
"There was no premonition that something bad will happen. I drove them to the airport. We hugged and my daughter was so happy to go on the trip. Being a policeman over 33 years, this is my worst day," he adds.
Some 10 people have gathered inside their small police apartment quarters to offer condolences with more expected to come.
Airport wait
At the Kuala Lumpur airport an AFP photographer reports similar scenes to those in Beijing, with relatives, some in tears, coming and going from a specially designated waiting area at the airport. Most decline to speak to the media.

Astro Awani


Kuching Police Chief Says Niece On Board The Missing Flight
KUCHING: Kuching Police chief ACP Roslan Bek Ahmad said his niece was a passenger on the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane that went missing today on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
He said his sister Rohani Ahmad, living in Section 19 Shah Alam, confirmed that his niece, Suhaili Mustafa, 31, was one of the 227 passengers on Flight MH370 which departed Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am. 

The Boeing 777-200 aircraft, also carrying 12 crew, lost contact with the Subang air traffic control at 2.40 am when it was in the airspace over the South China Sea between Malaysia and Vietnam. 

Roslan said he would take emergency leave and be with his sister, a widow, as she was traumatised and in need of support. 

"I have to go to Kuala Lumpur this evening to give her moral support and help my sister in whatever way I can," he said, adding that his sister was already at the KL International Airport to learn of the developments. 

During his absence, Kuching Police deputy chief Supt Fauzilan Abdul Aziz would act in his capacity, he said.


Bernama

First Time Flyer Onboard
KUCHING: Catherine Tamoh had expected her son to arrive Beijing by 7.30am, but got a shock when she received a call saying that her son's flight was missing.
“They told me the flight was missing. The flight with my son on board was missing,” said Catherine when contacted.

Catherine’s son, is Andrew Nari, is one of the 12 cabin crew on board the MH370 that went off the radar at 2.40am.

“We last spoke the night before his flight where he told me that he has sent some money for me,” said Catherine.

MAS requested Catherine to board a flight from Sibu to Kuala Lumpur at 4pm.

Meanwhile in GEORGE TOWN, a man's first time onboard a plane has caused anxiety among friends and relatives.

The man, only known as "Arab", a senior citizen had boarded MH370 with his daughter and the trip was part of the latter's incentive trip by the insurance company she works for.

Arab's friend, Sam Hong, 50, who was met during a Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia handout ceremony here in Bukit Gelugor, prayed that his friend is safe.

"He was so happy and jovial when we met for a drink last Thursday.

"He was telling me he had never travelled anywhere outside the country before and was looking forward to boarding a plane for the first time," he said.

Hong added that Arab had just retired from a logistics company as a van driver earlier this month, and lives in an apartment in Paya Terubong.

New Straits Times 
http://www.nst.com.my/latest/font-color-red-missing-mh370-font-first-time-flyer-onboard-1.502720#ixzz2vMMGYiCA

S'pore PM Prays For Passengers, Crew and Families
SINGAPORE : Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong says he prays for the passengers and crew on board a Malaysia Airlines Beijing-bound plne which lost contact with air traffic control Saturday.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the passengers and crew, and their families," he said on his Facebook posting on Saturday.

Sharing the same thoughts are Minister for Foreign Affairs K. Shanmugam, Minister of Information, Communications and the Arts Dr Yaacob Ibrahim and Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin.

Shanmugam said the news on the missing plane was extremely sad and distressing.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, was reported missing somewhere between
Malaysian and Vietnamese airspace over the South China Sea at 2.40 am. 

The B777-200 aircraft had left Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am and was scheduled to land in Beijing at 6.30 am.

It lost contact with the Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40 am.

Bernama

Mother-In-Law Of Boeing 777 - MH370 Passenger Distraught
KUALA LUMPUR: Hajjah Putih Haji Idris looked distraught and almost close to tears as she talked about her daughter-in-law, Nor Fadzillah Mat Rahim, who was on flight MH370 to Beijing.
Hajjah Putih said she received a phone call from Malaysia Airlines at around 6am this morning, and she rushed to KLIA.
Hajjah Putih Haji surrounded by journalists at KLIA
Not revealing a whole lot of information, she said that she was told by the airlines to nominate two family representatives to be at the airport with their passports ready at 6pm today.
They will then be brought to an unmentioned location.
"Nor Fadzillah has four children a three daughters and a son.She is a very good and loving daughter-in-law," said Hajjah Putih.
MH370, a code share flight with China Southern Airlines, left KLIA for Beijing at 12:41am this morning.
All communication with the plane was lost at 2:40am and no distress signal or call was received.
The flight had registered 239 passengers, 38 of them Malaysian. It was scheduled to arrive at Beijing International Airport at 6:30am local time.

Awani 
http://english.astroawani.com/news/show/mother-in-law-of-boeing-777-mh370-passenger-distraught-31484?cp


[UPDATE 2.50 pm] : KUALA LUMPUR: Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein in his tweet urged members of the public to not speculate news on the “missing” Malaysia Airlines (MAS) MH370 flight.
 “I’m making my way to (the) Flight Management Building (FMB) from Janda Baik to get latest updates and details from the agencies involved. In the mean time, don’t speculate.
 
“I've instructed all relevant agencies including TUDM (Royal Malaysian Air Force) to work together (in) locating the plane. Our  thoughts and prayers are with those on board,” he said today. 
 
He added that family members of the passengers on board should stay calm and only get information from validated sources.
 
“We'll keep all informed. Prayers with all,” he said. 
 
The airline’s vice-president operation control Fuad Sharuji said a press conference will be held at 11am..
 
MH370 flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing has lost contact with Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40am, today.
 
The plane was carrying a total of 227 passengers including two infants and twelve crew members.

 - NST
[UPDATE 2.00 pm] Najib, Hishammuddin harap keluarga penumpang MH370 bertenang
KUALA LUMPUR: Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak mendoakan kesejahteraan penumpang dan anak kapal pesawat Penerbangan Malaysia MH370 yang dilaporkan hilang.
Menerusi akaun Twitternya, Najib berkata beliau telah mengarahkan semua pihak yang berkenaan melakukan usaha yang terbaik bagi mengesan pesawat tersebut.

Sementara itu, Pemangku Menteri Pengangkutan, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein meminta semua ahli keluarga penumpang pesawat Penerbangan Malaysia MH370 yang dilapor hilang supaya bertenang.
Hishammuddin berkata ahli keluarga penumpang pesawat berkenaan diharap mendapat maklumat daripada sumber yang sahih.
Menerusi akuan Twitternya, Hishammuddin berkata, pihak beliau akan memaklumkan perkembangan pesawat yang hilang itu dari semasa ke semasa.
“"Kami akan terus memberi maklumat. Harap semua berdoa,"katanya.

@NajibRazak : My thoughts and prayers are with the family members of flight #MH370. I've asked all measures possible to be taken.
@HishammuddinH2O: To the family members of the passengers on board- stay calm &only get info fr validated sources. We'll keep all informed. Prayers with all

Astro Awani
More to come.

[UPDATED 11.00AM] MALAYSIA Airlines is currently contacting the next of kins of Flight MH370 passengers to update them on the latest development of the missing flight.

It was reported that there were 239 passengers (including 12 crews) in the flight bound to Beijing. The passengers comprise of 13 nationalities among which were Malaysians, Indonesians, Americans, Australians, Austrians, Chinese, Taiwanese, French, New Zealander, Dutch, Canadian, Ukrainian and Italian, among others. The flight was reported missing early this morning.
To date, the flight has been unlocated for nine hours and CNN has reported that the flight should ran out of fuel by now. Several rescue teams (both local and from Vietnam)  were launched to the South China Sea to trace the plane. CNN reports indicated that the rescue teams are considering the possibility that the plane might be under water.
The last point of contact with the flight was when it was over the South China Sea, near Vietnam.
Huffington Post reported that Vietnamese officials stated that no signal has been received from the lost plane, which was said to be 11 years and 10 months old, as yet.
In a press conference by Malaysia Airlines, pilot for Flight MH370 was reported to be Captain Zahari Ahmad Shah, 53, who has over 18,365 hours of flying experinece.
More updates to come.
This is the official media statement released by Malaysia Airlines:
Saturday, March 08, 09:05 AM MYT +0800 Malaysia Airlines MH370 Flight Incident
We deeply regret that we have lost all contacts with flight MH370 which departed Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am earlier this morning bound for Beijing. The aircraft was scheduled to land at Beijing International Airport at 6.30am local Beijing time. Subang Air Traffic Control reported that it lost contact at 2.40am (local Malaysia time) today.
Flight MH370 was operated on a Boeing B777-200 aircraft. The flight was carrying a total number of 239 passengers and crew – comprising 227 passengers (including 2 infants), 12 crew members. The passengers were of 13 different nationalities. Malaysia Airlines is currently working with the authorities who have activated their Search and Rescue team to locate the aircraft. Our team is currently calling the next-of-kin of passengers and crew.
Focus of the airline is to work with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilize its full support. Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected passengers and crew and their family members. The airline will provide regular updates on the situation.
The public may contact +603 7884 1234. For media queries, kindly contact +603 8777 5698/ +603 8787 1276.
It also advised the public to contact +603 7884 1234 for further information.

[UPDATE 9.15AM] UNCONFIRMED: Flight MH370 Lands Safely In Nanming

(UNOFFICIAL) Before Malaysia Airlines released its statement at 9.05am, we were alerted at 9.45am that Flight MH370 had resurfaced and landed safely in Nanming, China. Early reports indicated that the aircraft had experienced a cockpit electronics malfunction, a reliable source told Malaysian Digest.

It was said that the flight crew and all 239 passengers onboard were believed to be unharmed as some of the crew had already informed their families of their safety.

 
 
 
- mD