Malaysian Airlines Flight 370: Malaysia to Release Preliminary Report Next Week on Missing Jet

By @ibtimesau on

In an effort to appease angry relatives of the 150 Chinese passengers of the ill-fated Malaysian Airlines Flight 370, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said on Friday that the country would release a preliminary report on the missing jet.

He told CNN a copy of the report, the contents of which he declined to share yet, has been sent to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). However, ICAO told CNN that the report included a safety recommendation by Malaysia for the aviation industry to look into real-time tracking of commercial planes.

With the plane still missing after nearly two months and zero results of a multi-country search effort in southern Indian Ocean, Malaysia is under fire from the kin of the passengers. They believe the Southeast Asian country is hiding the truth from them.

But Malaysia insisted it is not hiding anything and is continuously seeking an answer to the mystery of the aircraft's disappearance.

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The missing Boeing 777 jet would likely be tackled during the Saturday visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to Kuala Lumpur. Mr Najib said the president's visit would be an opportunity to cast Malaysia in a fresh light amid heavy criticism on the way it has handled the crisis.

The prime minister said Malaysia is poised to play a bigger role in the region, citing its broker role in the recent signing of a landmark peace agreement between the Philippine government and Muslim separatists in the country's south.

It would be the first visit of an American president to Malaysia since the 1966 trip of President Lyndon B Johnson.

In releasing the interim report next week, Mr Najib told The Wall Street Journal, "We want to show we're not running away."

He admitted being shocked upon learning of the missing plane. "But at that time I didn't know the complexity of the problem. I didn't know it was going to be this gargantuan problem on an unprecedented scale," the Malaysian PM admitted.

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