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  • Dec 20, 2014
  • Updated: 4:00pm
Malaysia Airlines flight 370
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Flight MH370

China's ambassador to Malaysia distances country from anger of MH370 families

Ambassador to Malaysia strikes conciliatory tone as he emphasises joint responsibility in missing jet search after criticism from families

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 02 April, 2014, 11:44pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 03 April, 2014, 5:24pm
 

Beijing last night sought to distance itself from critical comments made by Chinese relatives of those onboard flight MH370, branding them "irresponsible" and unrepresentative of the views of the central government.

In an effort to smooth bilateral ties after a backlash in Malaysia over attacks by some families, China's ambassador to Malaysia Huang Huikang said he was confident the investigation was being handled well.

His statement came days after state media urged relatives to act "rationally" to news their loved ones had almost certainly perished in the Indian Ocean.

"Some Chinese families, internet users and well-known people have aired some radical views," Huang said.

"These radical and irresponsible opinions do not represent the views of Chinese people and the Chinese government."

Huang is the first official to comment on the outbursts.

Today a British nuclear submarine arrived at the site of the search, while Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak met officials in Perth.

“We owe it to the grieving families to... give them comfort and closure to  this rather tragic event and the world expects us to do our level best,” Najib said as he toured the search base in Perth.

Yesterday Huang defended Razak's use of the word "ended" when describing the probability that the jet plunged into the ocean on March 8 - a turn of phrase that infuriated relatives who said there was no evidence of a crash.

Some accused the Malaysians of "murdering" loved ones by delaying the rescue mission, while others called for a boycott of Malaysian travel and goods.

"None of the accusations are true," Huang said. "Najib Razak chose the word 'ended' instead of 'crashed' or 'lost'. I fully understood why, because the purpose was to avoid harmful meaning."

Huang's conciliatory tone marked a softening in the stance of the government, which last week allowed a demonstration to take place outside the Malaysian embassy in Beijing.

Huang said Kuala Lumpur had had problems co-ordinating the search and releasing consistent information, but added that Malaysia could not bear sole responsibility for the search.

China and Malaysia are ... co-operating with and trust each other
Ambassador Huang Huikang

"China and Malaysia are sincerely co-operating with and trust each other," he said. "We are willing to give helping hands to each other without hesitation whenever the other is in need."

The airline incident would not sour relations on the 40th anniversary of bilateral ties, Huang said. Planned celebrations would go ahead, with China giving two pandas to Malaysia and Najib visiting Beijing in May.

Huang's remarks came as Premier Li Keqiang and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott spoke by phone, during which time Li said rescue efforts should not be lessened.

Last night, following a meeting with Malaysia's civil aviation director-general Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, some Chinese families remained unrepentant.

One man, who did not wish to be named, said: "We have not raised any unreasonable demands. Our criticisms are not targeted at Malaysian people, but the government."

Yesterday Malaysia's top policeman, Inspector General Khalid Abu Bakar, warned investigators "may not ever know the real cause" of the disappearance of the Boeing 777 and the 239 people onboard.

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17

This article is now closed to comments

ntmount
Better late than never but generally the Malaysians have had a very rough deal over this incident by the Chinese gov which has fuelled other parties' fury.
The Malaysian gov. has been very generous, sincere and humble, just as I have found their citizens to be, on numerous trips to their lovely country.
dadada
Nice but feelings have been hurt, another black mark for the China govt, now roughing all its neighbours. Could you imagine another Asian govt like this, with no free press and free flow of factual info, one party absolutism, operates labor camps, denies and covers up own history, and great at picking fights with neighbours? Sounds like North Korea huh?
goncalo
The ambassador's words come too much late.
honger
To set the record straight, the Chinese govt never blamed the Malaysian govt even once in thsi incident, it is the families of the passengers.
It is no surpirse tho that as a China hater, u cannot resist hammering the Chinese for this occasion by posting lies and not facts.
TigerJ
Why are so many China bashers reading and posting on a South China newspaper? Just go home.
chanaa
tbh, the chinese govt did not say anything negative ( besides sending inaccurate sat data ). But the by not curbing the ill advised protests & whinning, its just as bad.
frankly, i think the chinese official just dont have a clue how to handle the openess of the grieving relatives. They are more used to plan A on disasters - bury the evidence, news blackout, state paper press releases.
ejmciii
It is freedom of speech and freedom of the press. Go home to the Mainland if you want only Government propaganda. We have freedom of speech in HK. Go home to China and leave HK alone. We don't need the masters telling us how to live.
wumao
honger, if you haven't seen any Chinese officials criticizing the Malaysian efforts, then you either haven't been following this very closely or you need your vision and hearing tested.
ejmciii
Or at least facts as your deluded mind sees them.
sy.levine.5
We Can Proactively Prevent MH370 Tragedies & Enhance Flight Safety & Economy
At the end of World War 2 a number of Air Force veterans got jobs at the FAA. The Air Force had been using military radar for tracking aircraft. They came in and pushed the FAA to enhance their system which was visual at that time. They added Radar like the military. So that the present Air Traffic Control (ATC) and management system came out of the military technology. The airlines, aircraft manufacturer, pilots don’t pay for the ATC system or GPS. The ATC system uses radar to record aircraft position and radio to record conversations with the pilots and controllers (the recordings are not considered private). The tradition ATC infrastructure, has already been accomplished with technology that came out of the military. The airlines don't pay for the tracking radars nor the cost of GPS. It is a hole in the present aviation system that the airlines, aircraft manufacturer and pilots, out of fear of liability, have put a “private” around the Digital Flight Data Recorder (DFDR) information being recorded in the aircraft have prevented that critical safety data from being used in real-time.
In this modern day of lots of International Travel and global economy the digital flight data recorder data should be telemetered to the ground in real-time and used to track the aircraft and prevent crashes. It can be done every second.

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