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Missing Malaysia Airlines plane: Family members urge airlines to pick up mobile phone signals of MH370 passengers

Published on Mar 9, 2014 3:17 PM
 
A woman (centre) thought to be a relative of a passenger of the missing Malaysia Airlines flight cries at a hotel in Beijing on March 9, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING - Desperate family members have asked Malaysia Airlines (MAS) to use satellite technology to pick up the mobile phone signals of passengers on flight MH370 before their phones run out of batteries.

A spokesman of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) also told distraught families of the missing flight gathered at the Crowne Hotel Beijing Lido that five passengers have been found to have boarded using stolen passports so far.

Media reports have said there were four such passengers.

But in Malaysia, the authorities said they have CCTV recordings of two passengers who were said to have used false passports to board the Beijing-bound flight.

Department of Civil Aviation director-general Azaruddin Abdul Rahman said on Sunday there were only two such passengers, not four as earlier reported by the media.

Earlier, two men - an Italian and an Austrian - had confirmed that they were not on the flight despite their names appearing on the manifest. Their passports were reported stolen in Thailand up to two years ago.

Meanwhile, state-run Xinhua reported that MAS will assist relatives of passengers of the missing flight to fly from Beijing to Kuala Lumpur on Monday morning, the airlines spokesman said on Sunday.

The airlines will arrange for five relatives of each passenger to travel to Kuala Lumpur, but the first plane will only carry two immediate relatives of each passenger, said Mr Ignatius Ong, representative of the airlines at a press conference.

The airlines is registering the passengers' family members and the exact departure time of Monday's flight has not yet been confirmed, he added.

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