News / Asia

    Interpol: Missing Malaysian Jet Unlikely Terrorist Event

    A Malaysian police official displays a photograph of 19-year-old Iranian  Pouri Nourmohammadi, one of the two men who boarded missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 flight using stolen European passports to the media at a press conference near Kuala Lump
    A Malaysian police official displays a photograph of 19-year-old Iranian Pouri Nourmohammadi, one of the two men who boarded missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 flight using stolen European passports to the media at a press conference near Kuala Lump
    The head of Interpol says the disappearance of a Malaysian passenger jet does not appear to be related to terrorism.

    Interpol Secretary-General Ronald Noble says new information about two Iranian men who used stolen passports to board the plane makes terrorism a less likely explanation for the jet's disappearance.

    The international police agency released photos showing the two boarding the plane at the same time.  They are identified as Pouri Nourmohammadi, 19, and Delavar Seyedmohammaderza, 29.

    Malaysian Police Inspector General Khalid Tan Sri says the 19 year old was likely trying to migrate to Germany.

    "We have been checking his background.  We have also checked him with other police organizations on his profile, and we believe that he is not likely to be a member of any terrorist group," the inspector told reporters. "And we believe that he is trying to migrate to Germany."
    A Malaysian police woman holds up a picture of Pouri Nourmohammadi, 19, an Iranian who boarded the now missing Malaysia Airlines jet MH370 with a stolen passport.A Malaysian police woman holds up a picture of Pouri Nourmohammadi, 19, an Iranian who boarded the now missing Malaysia Airlines jet MH370 with a stolen passport.
    Khalid said Nourmohammadi's mother knew he was traveling on a stolen passport.

    The other man's identity is still under investigation.  But the development reduces the likelihood they were working together as part of a terror plot.
     
    Meanwhile, an extensive review of all of those on board continues.
     
    ​Khalid says authorities are looking into four possible scenarios in connection with the plane's disappearance: hijacking, sabotage, personal disputes and the psychological condition of those on board.
     
    "There may be somebody on the flight who has bought huge sums of insurance. Who wants the family to gain from it. Or somebody who owes so much money and you know," he said, adding that they are looking at all possibilities.

    As relatives and friends of passengers wait for word on the fate of the flight in the Malaysian capital and in Beijing, many were holding on to hope. The wife of Malaysia's prime minister visited with families in the Malaysian capital.

    Preparing for worst

    In Beijing, families were anxious for any sign of progress, says one woman surnamed Wang, a daughter of one of the missing passengers.
     
    Wang says that for family members who lost contact with their relatives the most pressing issue is to find out where they are and what happened. She says that if the search and rescue is not yielding any results, they hope that authorities increase their efforts into the investigation of the possibility the plane was hijacked.
    A Chinese relative of passengers aboard a missing Malaysia Airlines plane looks out as she waiting for the latest news inside a hotel room for relatives or friends of passengers aboard the missing airplane in Beijing, China, March 11, 2014.A Chinese relative of passengers aboard a missing Malaysia Airlines plane looks out as she waiting for the latest news inside a hotel room for relatives or friends of passengers aboard the missing airplane in Beijing, China, March 11, 2014.
    As many hoped for the best they were also prepared for the worst.
     
    Selamat, the father of Flight MH370 passenger Mohd Khairul Amri, said his family hope to see whether his son is alive and in good condition, or whatever the outcome, they will accept it.
     
    Authorities from China have handed over photos of all 153 Chinese nationals on board the flight. China is stepping up its efforts to help aid in the search for the missing plane as search efforts pushed into its fourth day.
     
    Search efforts

    Beijing has redeployed satellites to help in the search for the Boeing 777 jet that vanished from radar screens early Saturday morning.
     
    Nine countries have joined the search effort, which once again was expanded on land and sea Tuesday.
     
    Search efforts are focusing on waters off the east and west of the Malaysian peninsula. U.S. naval vessels have joined the search in the Gulf of Thailand and a P-3C Orion anti-submarine and surveillance aircraft is aiding the search over waters off the west of Malaysia in the northern Straits of Malacca and the Andaman Sea.

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    Comments page of 2
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    by: Sane from: New York
    March 13, 2014 9:05 PM
    Most likely explanation is that this is a terrorist act and not an accident. Evidence is overwhelmingly against this being just some kind of accident. So the next question is where were the terrorists headed? I think most likely this plane was going to be used as a weapon just like 9/11. Most likely a hero pilot, knowing that all passengers were doomed anyway, took the plane down to spare the intended victims in another country.

    by: Godfrey Achinike from: Norway
    March 13, 2014 8:32 AM
    Everyday that passes, the informations we receive make this story even more complicated and frightening. First, the Chinese satellites released images that they believed could give a lead but later turned out to be a mistake, according to Malasyian Transport Minister. I hope nobody is trying to play some games here. No, no, certainly not with the lives of 227 passengers plus 12 crew members. It's better imagined than described what transpired before the flight and its passengers came to this tragic situation. Meanwhile, the search goes on

    by: Godfrey Achinike from: Norway
    March 12, 2014 8:18 AM
    The chances of the plane being hijacked by terrorists diminish with every rising sun . We have two Iranians with stolen passports; so what? This could be distraction . Where did the terrorists divert the plane? And if they succeeded, would have made their demands. Don't allow anybody deceive you . We're talking of a huge Jet with 239 people on board, more than the size of 5 luxury buses. Definitely, it's not the kind of flight that is made to land on air-strip. The problem could be system failure from the departed airport or even the flight itself. But whatever, we must find it as long as it's on this earth, unless some UFO have carried it far beyond our reach

    by: Joseph Effiong from: calabar - nigeria
    March 12, 2014 2:27 AM
    USA is playing with iran. The world refused to listen to what israel see about Iran's nuclear weapon. The plane that the two Iranians boarded with stolen passports is the same plane that disappeared into thin air.

    by: Whitney from: United States
    March 11, 2014 6:09 PM
    I don't buy it.

    by: Bernie Johnson
    March 11, 2014 5:28 PM
    Are either of the Iranians computer geeks? In December a report came out regarding network vulnerabities on Boeing 777 network systems that might allow a passenger to hack the navigation and control systems through the onboard enteraintainment system. What is that older Iranian clutching to his chest in the terminal photo?

    by: leny, from: usa
    March 11, 2014 4:40 PM
    Sad, even when such disaster happen,there is only hate expressed by some idiots. we should pray for this people and hope for results.

    by: Srg. M.C. from: NYPD
    March 11, 2014 12:30 PM
    we have just found out that two Iranians with stolen passports sneaked onto a passenger airliner that blow up - and that "reduces" the likelihood of a terrorist attack..??? - its stupid remarks like this one by the Interpol... well, that is frankly why we look at the Interpol as a bunch of idiots...
    In Response

    by: avlisk from: Arizona
    March 11, 2014 7:22 PM
    The military is also saying the jet took a left turn, flew over land for a couple of hundred miles with its transponder off. It all sounds like terrorism to me. But, I'm only looking at the reports, and don't know anything.
    In Response

    by: ebpcanimal from: California
    March 11, 2014 5:31 PM
    ...except there are a few pesky details that get in the way of broad generalizations:

    Never mind that Nourmohammadi's mother lives in Germany and he was trying to join her.
    Never mind that their itinerary was chosen not by themselves but by a travel agent searching for the cheapest flights.
    Never mind that they were not the ones who stole the passports in Thailand but instead purchased them on the black market in Malaysia for immigration purposes, according to their host in KL.
    Never mind that counterterrorism experts say passport fraud is common and any flight in Asia with this many passengers would have a couple people with false passports.
    Never mind that not only Interpol but the Malaysian Police IG and the PRC government have concluded it is unlikely these two men were involved with terrorism.
    Never mind that we do not yet have any evidence, only conjectures, that the plane blew up.

    Is this kind of thinking the reason your department has a such a big controversy with profiling? If you tried to prosecute, or even get a warrant, based on the assumption that "Iranian = bad," wouldn't you be laughed out of court? (Or are the courts a bunch of idiots too?)
    In Response

    by: Iranian Boy from: Esfahan
    March 11, 2014 4:57 PM
    Mr. Police! you tell me, What's the intention to explode Malaysian Airplane? most passengers were Chinese, , Iran and China's relation is strong and in good condition. I'm sure that you confuse Iranians with Arabs, those who live in Saudi, Egypt, Libya, ...
    In Response

    by: Matt from: LA
    March 11, 2014 4:56 PM
    It reduces it because they know who it is and no longer have to speculate
    In Response

    by: GregP from: U.S.A.
    March 11, 2014 4:50 PM
    Srg. M.C. - You don't know what you're talking about. When these two men's existence was first uncovered it led authorities to believe that they could have been terrorists who downed the plane. Since then they've learned more information about these men and have concluded that that's highly unlikely, hence reducing the chance that it was a terrorist act. If you'd been following the story you'd know this already. But hey, don't let your ignorance get in the way of being all indignant and self-righteous.
    In Response

    by: U.S. Army Maj. from: California
    March 11, 2014 4:44 PM
    ...and you are a NYPD? I didn't think much of them to begin with, but now, I think nothing of a NYPD with your ignorant remarks. It sounds like you couldn't get a job as an Interpol police so you resort to this ignorant nonsense; racism. Very unbecoming of an officer, but again, you are from NY.
    In Response

    by: Ar. from: Everywhere
    March 11, 2014 4:44 PM
    Fantastic grammar.
    In Response

    by: Salimeh Evjen from: Seattle
    March 11, 2014 4:43 PM
    You sound so incredibly ignorant. Most Iranians are pretty secular, our government is another matter. Have you heard of the green revolution? It was led by Iran's youth wanting political change. The sad reality is that this 19 year old was probably fleeing his country hoping for freedom. Human smuggling is huge in that area. For you to assume that his nationality automatically brands him a terrorist shows how incredibly ignorant you are.
    In Response

    by: SAE from: socal
    March 11, 2014 4:39 PM
    terrorist s on sept 11 was all Saudi Arabian and Kuwaitis of sunni origin not Iranian of Shiite religion.sept 11 terrorists all belong to satanic monarchy of Saudi Arabia! which America doesn't want to bring democracy to!

    by: USMC from: USA
    March 11, 2014 12:02 PM
    Iranians... LOL... OMG - what a bunch of idiots.
    Obama must either green light the Israelis on Iran or have a combined US/iL operation to root out this theocratic malignancy from this world. Iranians have destroyed Lebanon with their Hizbula, They destroyed Iraq with their Sadr Shia filth. Now Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia... they have a base of operations in Malaysia and Thailand - if you remember the Iranian jerks who blow themselves up trying to kill Americans and Israelis ...
    In Response

    by: Iranian Boy from: Isfahan
    March 11, 2014 5:02 PM
    Most passengers were Chinese, Iran and China has no problem with each other. It seems that you forget the strong ties between Saudi and Islamic fundamentalists in the region, so don't blame Iranians
    In Response

    by: U.S. Army Maj. from: Earth
    March 11, 2014 4:42 PM
    Comments like yours are of the utmost ignorant kind. Your lack of wisdom certainly shines through. It's no wonder we send in the Jar Heads first, they are all expendable due to their ignorance. Your facts are wrong. And the only jerk is you! You can't certainly be a U.S. solider. You must be Israeli or Arab.

    by: PermReader
    March 11, 2014 11:51 AM
    What besides the explosion can stop the communication completly?
    In Response

    by: avlisk from: Arizona
    March 11, 2014 7:24 PM
    The electronics in the cockpit could be turned off deliberately.
    In Response

    by: Jerry from: Central IL
    March 11, 2014 4:45 PM
    It can be deliberately turned off.
    Comments page of 2
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