Saturday 21 January 2017

Flight MH370 search: families face legal deadline as well as emotional milestone

MH370 next-of-kin rush to file lawsuits before second anniversary cut-off for claims, even though they still have no idea why missing plane vanished from skies

Published 08/03/2016 | 08:00

International school students light candles to pray for passengers aboard Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, in Zhuji, China
International school students light candles to pray for passengers aboard Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, in Zhuji, China
Fariq Abdul Hamid, left, and Zaharie Ahmad Shah were the pilots on the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has said he is hopeful that missing Flight 370 will still be found as politicians observe a moment of silence to mark the second anniversary of the plane's disappearance.

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Mr Najib said the wing part found on France's Reunion island last July was evidence that the flight tragically ended in the southern Indian Ocean.

He added that an ongoing search is expected to be completed later this year and Malaysia "remains hopeful" that the plane will be found.

Read More: Families of 12 passengers of missing flight MH370 sue Malaysia Airlines and government

If the search turns up nothing, he said in a statement on Tuesday that Malaysia, Australia and China will hold a meeting to determine the way forward.

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 jet vanished mysteriously with 239 people on board while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8 2014.

Under international aviation law, next of kin must file claims against the carrier Malaysia Airlines by that date – even though they still have no idea why the plane carrying their loved ones vanished from the skies on March 8, 2014.

Read More: 'High probability' latest debris is from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

There has been a rush of cases lodged in recent days in Kuala Lumpur by lawyers for some of the 227 passengers – mainly Chinese and Malaysian – and 12 crew who boarded what should have been a routine overnight flight to Beijing.

Press Association

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