Ahead of MH370’s 9th anniversary, Malaysia says open to new search if ‘credible’ info emerges
KUALA LUMPUR, March 5 — Malaysia would carefully evaluate new search operations for Flight MH370 were new and credible information to emerge about its location, Transport Minister Anthony Loke said today.
In a message ahead of the ninth anniversary of the plane’s disappearance in 2014, Loke also expressed his sympathies to the families of those on board the Malaysia Airlines flight that vanished without a trace.
“As transport minister, I will not summarily close the book on this tragedy,” Loke said.
“I reiterate the government of Malaysia’s position that due consideration will be given to future search operations should there be new and credible information on the potential location of the aircraft’s final resting place.”
MH370 was on flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, when it went missing over the South China Sea. To date, the plane as well as the 239 (227 passengers 12 crew) passengers have not been found despite a multinational search effort that lasted years.
Underwater searches for the plane in the Indian Ocean have covered 120,000 square kilometres and cost about A$200 million (RM605 million) was subsequently suspended indefinitely in January 2017 until Malaysia accepted a “no-cure, no-fee” offer from US exploration firm Ocean Infinity in 2018.
The three-month search covered 112,000 sq km north of the original target area, without any new discovery when it was called off in May 2018.
An official 495-page report in July 2018 stated that MH370 was deliberately taken off course by a person or persons unknown.
It has been recorded as the most expensive search effort in aviation history.
At a special commemoration event called the 9th Annual MH370 Remembrance Event 2023 on Facebook, event host Grace Subatharai Nathan called for the search to resume for all the people who lost their loved ones.
She asked for closure for the families, including some had not yet been born at the time of the tragedy.
“So much has happened in nine years. There was an unborn baby as a next of kin was expecting when the plane disappeared. That baby is now going to school and is in Standard One or Two, that’s how much time has passed.
“I was a student at the time and now am a mother. Others are grandparents, husbands but what we’ve always said is MH370 is not history, it’s the future. If we don’t know what happened to MH370, we cannot prevent it from happening again.
“Today it’s us, tomorrow it could be anyone who boards a plane and that should be prevented at all costs. This is not a mystery that should be left a mystery forever, it is just not acceptable,” she said.