Upset Chinese relatives of missing MH370 passengers demand search to continue

The Australian government said on Wednesday it was not ruling out a future underwater search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, but added there was currently no credible new evidence to warrant it.
Mr Li Eryou, a farmer from Hebei, speaking to the media to protest the suspension of the search for the ill-fated Flight MH370. His son was on board the plane when it went missing.
Mr Li Eryou, a farmer from Hebei, speaking to the media to protest the suspension of the search for the ill-fated Flight MH370. His son was on board the plane when it went missing.ST PHOTO: CHONG KOH PING

BEIJING - Some 30 family members of Chinese passengers on board Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 gathered on Wednesday (Jan 18) near the Beijing airport to protest the suspension of the years-long search for the missing plane.

"We, of course, disagree with the suspension of the search," said Mr Li Eryou, 60, whose son was on the plane.

"We want them to continue with the search, and allow the family members of every passenger to speak with the Malaysian government directly," he told reporters.

The government of Australia, Malaysia and China said in a joint statement on Tuesday that "despite every effort using the best science available... the search has not been able to locate the aircraft".

The location of Flight MH370 has become a mystery since the plane disappeared en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur on March 8, 2014.

The fate of 227 passengers and 12 crew members on board the Boeing 777 remains unknown. About two-thirds of the passengers were Chinese. Other nationalities included 38 Malaysians, seven Indonesians, six Australians, five Indians, four French and three Americans.

Family members of the Chinese passengers met a representative of the Malaysian airline on Wednesday morning.

They told reporters that the airline offered to let four family representatives go to Kuala Lumpur to meet the Malaysian authorities.

"How can four people represent us? We won't agree to this," said Ms Dai Shuqin, 63, whose younger sister and her family of five were on board the plane.

She believes that her family is still alive.

"If they don't want to continue with the search, so be it! Just return me my sister," she said.

"This is a conspiracy. They are tricking us."

The family members are slated to meet the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Friday to seek assistance.