Was Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 spotted by residents of the Maldives Islands on the morning the Boeing 777 went missing?
As the focus of the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane missing for 14 days switched to the Indian Ocean, that's the question being asked by investigators after eye witnesses on the small islands of Maldives came forward with reports of a low-flying jet observed overhead on the morning of March 8, the International Business Times reported
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"I’ve never seen a jet flying so low over our island before," one witness told HaveeruOnline
. "We’ve seen seaplanes, but I’m sure that this was not one of those. I could even make out the doors on the plane clearly,"
"It’s not just me either, several other residents have reported seeing the exact same thing. Some people got out of their houses to see what was causing the tremendous noise too," the witness added.
Another eye witness, a fisherman named Azid Ibrahim, told CNN
that he was in a boat off the coast of Kota Bharu when he too observed a low-flying plane early Saturday morning.
"I was fishing when I saw the plane – it looked strange. Flying low. I told my friend that's not normal," Ibrahim said. "Normally, it flies at 35,000 feet. But that night it touched the clouds. I thought the pilot must be crazy."
"It was really low. I saw the lights they looked like the size of a coconut," he added.
In response to the possibility that the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 had at some point flown over the tiny island nation the morning it went missing, the Maldivian government issued a statement this week in which it said the flight had not been picked up by the country's military radar or any other radar at airports on the island. Planes of course are able to avoid being detected on radar if they fly low enough to the ground.
Despite the lack of radar evidence, the Maldives National Defense Force issued a statement
on Wednesday, saying that it is "monitoring the Maldives region with special attention since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 [and] will continue to render any assistance required by the Maldives Police Service and international authorities on the search for the missing flight and related issues."
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The missing Boeing 777 airliner had 239 people aboard
, 227 passengers and 12 crew members, when it mysteriously disappeared the Saturday before last.
Of the 227 passengers, three were Americans
, and two were reportedly children. There were 38 Malaysians, seven Indonesians, six Australians, five Indians, and four French people. The remainder of the passengers on the flight were reportedly Chinese nationals.
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