Published: Mon, July 30, 2018
World News | By Laverne Osborne

Official report suggests MH370 'most likely hijacked'

Official report suggests MH370 'most likely hijacked'

However, he said the possibility could not be ruled out as the plane was turned around manually.

"The answer can only be conclusive if the wreckage is found", Kok Soo Chon, who headed the MH370 safety investigation team, said.

Grace Nathan, a lawyer whose mother, Anne Daisy, was on the plane, said: "We hope that these mistakes will not be repeated and that measures are put in place to prevent them in the future".

The MH370 story is etched in aviation history as the most freakish incident, how a Boeing 777 with 239 people onboard vanished under mysterious circumstances, unleashing never ending scenarios provided both by aviation experts and conspiracy theorists.

Kok said it was up to police to investigate. "We have examined the pilot and the first officer and we are quite satisfied with their background, with their training, with their mental health", he said.

There was a 2.4-ton shipment of lithium ion batteries on board that had not been scanned because there were no X-ray machines big enough, as well as 4.5 tons of mangosteen fruit. There's nothing to suggest the plane was evading radar, or evidence of behavioural changes in the crew, it said.

Family members speak to the media after an MH370 closed door meeting in Putrajaya, Malaysia July 30, 2018.

The final voice communication from the cockpit came less than an hour after takeoff: "Good night, Malaysian three seven zero".

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Some of the next of kin left the briefing at Malaysia's ministry of transport in tears, telling awaiting media teams they were devastated that after four years they still do not know what happened to their loved ones. "Safety is not something to be taken lightly", she said. "It makes no sense if they (the investigators) say there are no hints as to what could have happened".

But there were failures by those on the ground after the plane diverted from its planned flight path, with Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, failing to notify Chinese authorities when the plane failed to make contact with it and then air traffic controllers failing to initiate emergency procedures, thereby delaying any search and rescue.

Malaysia had signed a "no find, no fee" deal with Ocean Infinity to resume the hunt after the official search led by Australia, Malaysia and China was called off in early 2017.

Monday's 449-page report offered little to solve modern aviation's biggest mystery - and stopped short of apportioning specific blame. But that search was called off after failing to find anything.

It was the second major search after Australia, China and Malaysia ended a fruitless $147 million search across an area of 120,000 sq km a year ago.

Several theories have emerged about how the plane disappeared, with some suggesting the plane was hijacked and others believing someone on board may have deliberately turned off the plane's transponder before diverting it over the Indian Ocean.

The report also dismissed one conspiracy theory about the plane's disappearance - that it was taken over remotely to foil a hijacking, saying there was no evidence to support this.

Scattered pieces of debris have washed ashore on beaches in Africa and Indian Ocean islands, indicating a remote stretch of the ocean where the plane probably crashed.

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