China demands satellite data on missing Malaysia plane as search area narrowed
Australia said improved weather would allow the hunt for the plane to resume Wednesday after gale-force winds and heavy rain forced a daylong delay. Searchers face a daunting task of combing a vast expanse of choppy seas for suspected remnants of the aircraft sighted earlier.
"We're not searching for a needle in a haystack - we're still trying to define where the haystack is," Australia's deputy defense chief, Air Marshal Mark Binskin, told reporters at a military base in Perth as idled planes stood behind him.
Late Monday, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak announced that a new analysis of satellite data confirmed the plane had crashed in a remote part of the southern Indian Ocean.
That announcement unleashed a storm of sorrow and anger among the families of the plane's passengers and crew - two-thirds of them Chinese. Family members of the passengers have complained bitterly about a lack of reliable information and some say they are not being told the whole truth.
Nearly 100 relatives and their supporters marched Tuesday to the Malaysian Embassy in Beijing, where they threw plastic water bottles, tried to rush the gate and chanted, "Liars!"
Many wore white T-shirts that read "Let's pray for MH370" as they held banners and shouted, "Tell the truth! Return our relatives!"
There was a heavy police presence at the embassy. Police briefly scuffled with a group of relatives who tried to approach journalists.
In a clear statement of support for the families, Chinese President Xi Jinping ordered a special envoy, Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Yesui, to Kuala Lumpur to deal with the case. Deputy Foreign Minister Xie Hangsheng told Malaysia's ambassador that China wanted to know exactly what led Najib to announce that the plane had been lost, a statement on the ministry's website said.
Investigators and the Malaysian government have been able to say little with certainty about Flight 370's fate since it disappeared on March 8 shortly after taking off from Kuala Lumpur for Beijing.
Left unanswered are many troubling questions about why it was so far off course. Experts piecing together radar and satellite data believe the plane back-tracked over Malaysia and then traveled in the opposite direction to the Indian Ocean.
Investigators will be looking at various possibilities including mechanical or electrical failure, hijacking, sabotage, terrorism or issues related to the mental health of the pilots or someone else on board.
Chinese President Xi Jinping will send a special envoy to Kuala Lumpur to consult with the Malaysian government over the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, state news agency Xinhua said on Tuesday. The news outlet said Xi "had ordered to send a special envoy to Kuala Lumpur." It did not name the envoy.
In a separate statement, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said China will ask Malaysia to provide more detailed and accurate information on the plane, according to a government microblog account.
Li said the most important task at the moment is to search for the missing plane. He also expressed sympathy to the family members.
Furious over Malaysia's handling of the lost jetliner a day after the country said the passengers must be dead, Chinese relatives of the missing marched Tuesday to the Malaysian Embassy, where they threw plastic water bottles, tried to rush the gate and chanted, "Liars!". The Chinese government, meanwhile, demanded that Malaysia turn over the satellite data it used to conclude that Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 was lost in the southern Indian Ocean with no survivors during a flight to Beijing.
Dozens of angry relatives of passengers aboard the ill-fated Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 held a protest in Beijing, state media reported. The demonstrators carried banners saying "We want the truth," and "Why have they made us wait so long?" and were heading towards the Malaysia embassy, state media reported.
China has asked for Malaysia to supply all information and evidence related to the disappearance of flight MH370, which the Malaysian authorities said had crashed into the southern Indian Ocean. Most of the passengers on the flight were Chinese.
Families outside Malaysian embassy demanding ambassador come out, tell the truth, and return their loved ones.
Voice of Russia, Reuters, AP