The ‘fanatical’ pilot aboard the missing Malaysia Airlines plane is related to Malaysia’s jailed opposition leader, it was revealed today.
After previously denying he recognised the pliot’s name, opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim admitted that Malaysia Airlines MH370 Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah is related to his son-in-law.
‘I am not denying that he (Zaharie) is related to one of my in-laws and that I have met him on several occasions,’ he said.
After previously denying he reconigsed his name, opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, left, has admitted that Malaysia Airlines MH370 pilot Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, right, is related to his son in law.
He also admitted Zaharie is a close friend of PKR supreme council member and Subang MP R. Sivarasa.
He added: ‘To politicise this is not right. We should respect the family’s rights and pray for them instead of prosecuting him before the investigation is completed.’
Anwar further admitted that Zaharie was a staunch opposition supporter and that he had met the pilot on a few occasions at party functions.
He said: ‘I am not one to hide my associations with others. I have met him once or twice but I do not remember how many times.’
Families of the passengers aboard the missing plane decided to organize a hunger strike to express their anger and disappointment at the handling of the situation by authorities.
They decided on the action after a daily morning meeting with two officials from Malaysia Airlines.
Furious Chinese families today threatened to go on hunger strike until the Malaysian government tells them the truth about the fate of their relatives aboard the flight which went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
Ten days after the airliner vanished an hour into its flight, hundreds of family members are still waiting for information in a Beijing hotel.
Around two thirds of the 239 passengers on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 are Chinese.
Families vented their pain and anger on Chinese representatives sent by the airline to meet them on Tuesday and demanded to see the Malaysian ambassador.
‘What we want is the truth. Don’t let them become victims of politics. No matter what political party you are, no matter how much power you have, if there isn’t life, what’s the point? Where is compassion?’ asked one middle-aged woman angrily.
‘You’re always going back and forth. I think your government knows in their heart why we want you to answer us. Because you’re always tricking us, telling us lies,’ added one man.
A pilot of an AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft scanning the surface of the sea during a search operation for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 to the west of Peninsula Malaysia.
Two RAAF Orions have been assigned to the Malaysian-coordinated search for Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370.
The Australian Marine Safety Authority (AMSA) is coordinating a search of water spanning more than 600,000 square kilometres, some 3200km southwest of Perth.
China has repeatedly called on the Malaysian side to do a better job at looking after the relatives of the Chinese passengers, and to provide them with updated information.
Today China announced checks into the background of all the Chinese nationals on board the missing Malaysian jetliner have uncovered no links to terrorism.
The remarks by the Chinese ambassador in Kuala Lumpur will dampen speculation that Uighur separatists in far western Xinjiang province might have been involved with the disappearance of the Boeing 777 and its 239 passengers and crew early on March 8.
The plane was carrying 154 Chinese passengers, when Malaysian officials say someone on board deliberately diverted it from its route to Beijing less than one hour into the flight
A massive search operation has yet to find any trace of the plane.
Chinese Ambassador to Malaysia Huang Huikang said today that background checks on Chinese nationals did not uncover any evidence suggesting they were involved in hijacking or an act of terrorism against the plane, according to state news agency Xinhua.
He also said that Chinese authorities had begun searching for the plane on its territory.
Malaysian police are investigating the pilots and ground engineers of the plane, and have asked intelligence agencies from countries with passengers on board to carry out background checks on those passengers.