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MH370: Family members will not accept announcement without evidence

MH370: Family members will not accept announcement without evidence
Families of MAS370 Passengers will not accept any announcement or declaration of plane lost without any hard evidence. - File pic
KUALA LUMPUR: Families of MAS370 Passengers will not accept any announcement or declaration of plane lost without any hard evidence.

MAS flight MH370 went missing on 8th March 2014, and the one year mark is just round the corner.

Families and friends with loved ones onboard have been living through an agonizing and tortured life. We believe those who are not personally involved cannot even begin to imagine the pain and suffering we are faced with on a daily basis.

We however acknowledge the many sympathiers who have stood with us.
To an outside world, looking at it from an impersonal aspect, it may be time to forget the episode and move on. However, to us families it’s not so easy, especially to many among us who believe in God.

Over the last few days, news has been circulating that the Malaysian authorities are going to make a major announcement with regards to the fate of MH370 on 29th January 2015. Since this news surfaced, well over 5000 text messages have been exchanged through social media chat groups between family members and friends, expressing bewilderment, fear, sorrow and a host of other emotions and uncertainties.
Voice370 is our family support organization. Neither the Malaysian Authorities nor Malaysia Airlines have acknowledged our existence. However, we are very appreciative of the fact the Australian Authorities have accepted us as representatives of the Next of Kin of MH370 victims.

In a prompt response to a query sent yesterday (27/01/15), JACC has reassured us that the current search in the Southern Indian Ocean is progressing as planned and almost a third of the area has been searched.

They have assured us that there will be no let up until the 60,000 square kilometers targeted under phase 1 are searched. In a further proactive measure, they are taking steps to prepare for recovery in the event that the search finds evidence of the plane, to ensure little time is lost.

Therefore, we the Next of Kin of MH370 victims are perplexed as to why the Malaysian authorities are jumping the gun in wanting to make any announcements, while the search is a long way from completion.

At the very least, we expect them to have the patience to wait for the first phase of search to be completed before making any announcements.

Considering the fact that the majority of victims are Chinese, their uncaring attitude is also very apparent from the timing of such a major announcement as it has been planned so close to Chinese New Year/Spring Festival.

We have stated it before and reiterate it again, that we are prepared for any eventuality, including the fact that our loved ones may never come back. However, almost all families are unanimous in our stand that we do not want to declare our loved ones dead, without a shred of evidence!!

We acknowledge that we are powerless against the authorities. We can only appeal for their compassion and understanding. We pray the rest of the world, especially those who have undergone similar difficult times will stand with us.

What we appeal for is assurance from the Chinese, Malaysian and Australian authorities that the search will not be abandoned anytime soon.

We also seek the support of ICAO, industry organizations like IATA, friends and well-wishers to support us in our humble request to convince the powers that be to continue the search until the plane and our loved ones are found.

We take this opportunity to thank the media and the countless people who have supported us in our time of need.