Missing Malaysia Airlines plane: Chinese media attack MAS and Malaysia government over handling of MH370
Published on Mar 10, 2014 11:58 AM
Chinese media have begun attacking the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) and the Malaysian government over the handling of the missing MH370 flight carrying 153 Chinese passengers even as netizens step up prayers for their fellow countrymen and ponder over the "fragility of life".
More than 100 grieving relatives have turned anguish to anger at the MAS, accusing the airlines of not treating them well and worst, of "hiding the truth" from them over the real cause and status of the plane missing for over 48 hours since Saturday 1.30am.
Chinese nationals make up the largest group among the total 239 passengers and crew on board.
The Global Times, a tabloid under the Communist Party mouthpiece People's Daily, said in a tersely worded editorial on Monday that "the Malaysian side cannot shirk its responsibilities".
"Until yesterday, it could not even ensure accurate information about the passengers. The initial response from Malaysia was not swift enough. There are loopholes in the work of Malaysia Airlines and security authorities," it wrote.
The Global Times added that the airlines should take the blame if it turns out to be a deadly mechanical breakdown or pilot error and the security checks at Kuala Lumpur airport and on the flight would be called into question if it turns out to be a terrorist attack.
Two of the passengers on board the Kuala Lumpur-Beijing flight have been found to be using fake passports, sparking fears of a possible terror element.
The state-run China Daily said in an editorial on Monday that "it wears our patience" to wait for news about the missing flight as it cites the two bogus passengers as a reminder for tighter security checks.
"Whether the missing plane is located or not, and whether its loss is due to terrorist attack or a mechanical fault or something else, the fact that some of the passengers on board were travelling with false passports should serve as a reminder to the whole world that security can never be too tight, at airports in particular, since terrorism, the evil of the world, is still trying to stain human civilisation with the blood of innocent lives," it wrote.
Even the official Xinhua agency seems to take a swipe at the Malaysian government in a report on Monday morning saying China is sending officials to Kuala Lumpur to "urge the Malaysian side to speed up search and rescue mission, investigate the incident and help family members already in Malaysia".
The officials scheduled to land in Malaysia on Monday afternoon are from the foreign, public security, transport ministries, and the civil aviation administration. China has sent six naval ships to conduct search-and-rescue efforts near likely crash sites in waters off Vietnam.
In the Chinese cyberspace, Internet users have turned contemplative as the wait for news of their countrymen enters its third day.
Netizen Wang Qi wrote on Monday morning on his Sina Weibo account as he posted photos of planes landing at airports: "The skies are so beautiful. Hope you are safe... Let us not forget that the biggest luxury in life is to be able to hug your loved ones. MH370, we won't stop praying for you!"