KUALA LUMPUR – Recent press speculation regarding a declaration of loss of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 that went missing since March 8, was an expression of a personal opinion, said Malaysia Airlines (MAS).
In a statement here Monday, the national carrier added that any course of action would always be guided by the advice of the technical team in charge of the search operations.
“The assurance given to us are that the ongoing search and recovery operations will remain and will not be discontinued. Any information regarding MH370, the operations and any matters related to the missing aircraft will only be communicated by the Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC),” the airline said.
MAS Airline Director Hugh Dunleavy was recently quoted as saying that MAS was waiting for flight MH370 to be officially declared lost so that compensation could be worked out for the next-of-kin of passengers.
“Malaysia Airlines is hopeful that we will find closure to this tragedy and we support and thank our government, as well as the governments of Australia and China for their invaluable assistance in this time of crisis,” it said.
“The airlines also shared the pain and anguish of family members in having to deal and come to terms with this situation, as such we have assured them that locating the aircraft and recovering the flight data recorders remain the key priority.”
“Every party involved in this complex operation is as determined as the families and Malaysia Airlines to find answers to our many questions. With regard to compensation available pursuant to the Montreal Convention, or similar applicable legal regime, the airline has made it very clear that payments are determined by law to take account of proven passenger and family circumstances and will be assessed accordingly,” it said.
MAS and its insurers remain steadfast to ensure that fair and reasonable compensation was paid to the families of all MH370 passengers in accordance with the law when the families are ready to discuss the issue.
“We reiterate that the airline will honour any commitment made, the well-being of the family members is always our main priority, and we will continue to communicate any updates as and when we have them,” MAS said.
MH370 left KLIA at 12.41am on March 8 with 14 crew members and 227 passengers from 14 different nations but the plane lost contact with air traffic control between Malaysian and Vietnamese airspace at 1.20am.
The Boeing 777 had then allegedly made a turn back towards the Straits of Melaka and is believed to have “ended” its journey in the southern part of the Indian Ocean. – Bernama