News Asia-Pacific

Wednesday 3 September 2014

'Someone on the plane deliberately made MH370 crash'

Jonathan Pearlman, Kuala Lumpur

Published 02/04/2014 | 02:30

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Australian Defense ship Ocean Shield is docked at naval base HMAS Stirling while being fitted with an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) and towed pinger locator to aid in the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370
Australian Defense ship Ocean Shield is docked at naval base HMAS Stirling while being fitted with an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) and towed pinger locator to aid in the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370

THE Malaysian authorities insisted yesterday that "someone on the plane" was responsible for the disappearance of flight MH370, saying investigators still believed that the disabling of its communications and the westward turn above the Gulf of Thailand were "deliberate".

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Two official sources, who are close to the investigation but not authorised to comment publicly, said there were three main reasons investigators believe that the plane's manoeuvres before it vanished on March 8 were intentional:

* The communications were disabled during the handover between Malaysian and Vietnamese air traffic controllers, the moment at which the jet's disappearance from radars was least likely to be noticed. "That is the precise moment to disappear an aircraft – that was what was exploited," a source said.

* MH370's unusual flight path – though little is known about its speed and altitude – appears to have been programmed deliberately.

* According to the source: "All the investigators are saying the same thing – there is no precedent in the history of commercial aviation where the sat-com (satellite communications) and the transponder have been knocked out and the plane continued to fly."

A second source confirmed that the "working notion is it was deliberate", but said further explanation was unlikely until the plane's black box was found.

No motive has been uncovered and nothing suspicious has been found about any of the 239 passengers and crew, including the pilot and co-pilot.

International search coordinator Angus Houston warned yesterday that the hunt may not find floating debris and was not "necessarily going to be resolved in the next two weeks".

He was speaking as the British submarine HMS Tireless arrived in the search area and began the hunt for the flight recorders. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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