Israel Fears Attack from ‘Hijacked’ Malaysian Flight MH370; Iran’s Role Still Suspected

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By Gopi Chandra Kharel | March 17, 2014 8:58 PM EST

Israel is suspecting threat from Iran
Israel is suspecting threat from Iran

As the theory that the missing Malaysia Airlines flight 370 might have been hijacked has grown popular of late, Israel has tightened security in its airspace, amid fears that the airplane could launch an attack anytime.

According to The Times of Israel, the security officials and aviation authorities recently held a meeting and decided to beef up security measures for ensuring safety in the Israeli airspace. [ALSO READ: Chilling Theory on Missing Malaysian Flight MH370: Could be World's First Cyber Hijack]

Among the many measures stipulated by the Israeli officials, one said that the airliners will be required to identify themselves much in advance, before approaching Israeli airspace. Other measures were not known as of now, the newspaper said.

Interestingly, the increased security measures has come after the same newspaper reported, citing a former global security chief for El AI, that the disappearance of the Malaysian flight MH370 points directly to Iran.

Isaac Yeffet, who now works as an aviation security consultant in New Jersey, said that when the Malaysian authorities were primarily taking the leads from the two fake-passport holders, they were going towards the right direction but now, authorities are making mistakes by ignoring Iran's link to a possible conspiracy.

On Saturday, Prime Minister of Malaysia, Najib Razak, confirmed citing various military and satellite data that the plane was definitely flying until 8:11am (local time, 9 March). The plane was reported to have vanished from radar at around 1: 21am.

The jet could have traveled to Iran
The jet could have traveled to Iran

According to the new information, the plane was, therefore, flying for a total time of around eight hours. The approximate distance between Malaysia and Iran is 3700 miles, if travelled through air. Considering the jet would have travelled in the speed of 600 miles per hour, it could have well reached Tehran within that time (600 x 8= 4800 miles.)

More importantly, newly acquired satellite data indicated that MH370 either flew towards Kazakhstan or south Indian Ocean. New corridors for search have now been added, including areas north from the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, through to northern Thailand. Search will also continue towards south from Indonesia to the southern Indian Ocean.

Hypothetically speaking, if the jet could have reached the border of Kazakhstan, it would have well reached Iran, which is not very far from there. Interestingly, at a time when nothing more is known about the whereabouts of the jet, the Israeli government is considering all possibilities.

More than a week after the plane's mysterious disappearance, 25 countries are now involved in the search of the aircraft as suspicions have increasingly turned towards sabotage and, possibly, terrorism.

On Sunday, officials said that the last words heard from the missing jetliner's cockpit did not indicate anything wrong, while one of the plane's communications had already been disabled when the message came - an indication that adds to the possibility that the pilots could have been involved in the jet's mysterious disappearance.

What was initially an international search for a jet, has now become a criminal investigation. And after the Malaysian Prime Minister spoke with reporters on Saturday and said the plane might have been deliberately veered off its course, the Malaysian police searched the home of the airplane's pilot Zahari Ahmad Shah, 53. 

Police made no comments about what they were looking for. They were approached by journalists as they came out of the home of co-pilot Fariq Ab Hamid, 27. Two vans exited the home, with authorities taking small bags which reportedly looked similar to shopping bags. Though CNN reports that it was unclear if the bags were taken from the pliot's home.

Meanwhile, Malaysian authorities said on Sunday that the two pilots had not decided to fly the plane together. They also said that ground staff background checks are also being conducted while police haven't received all passenger background checks.  

The wide-body jet, carrying 239 people onboard, was reported to have vanished from the civilian air-traffic control radar in the wee hours of Saturday, only about an hour into its journey from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. 

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(Photo: Reuters / )
As the theory grows that the missing Malaysian flight MH370 could have been hijacked, Israel is fearing a possible attack from the jet.
(Photo: / )
Israel is suspecting threat from Iran
(Photo: / )
The jet could have traveled to Iran
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