Interpol harshly rebuked the Malaysian government this week after officials claimed they did not check flyer’s passports against Interpol’s database because their servers were too slow. The feuding follows an announcement from China that they have seen evidence of debris matching the color of the plane at the new search site.
“Interpol has no idea why Malaysia’s home minister chooses to attack Interpol instead of learning from this tragedy,” the agency said in a statement in response to Malaysia’s claim that they did not regularly consult the passport database because of difficulties using the technology, according to the Wall Street Journal.
In a statement posted on their website, Interpol listed a number of countries that regularly check passports using their database, including the United States, and blamed Malaysia’s inability to find two individuals on missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 using stolen passports until long after the plane disappeared on the government itself. “If there is any responsibility or blame for this failure, it rests solely with Malaysia’s Immigration Department,” it concluded.
Tensions with Interpol highlight the increasing conflict between Malaysia and international parties attempting to contribute to rescue efforts in search of the plane. By far the greatest source of conflict has been Malaysia’s treatment of Chinese relatives of those on board the missing flight in Kuala Lumpur, where they have been barred from speaking to members of the media. The United States government has also expressed frustration at the Malaysian government’s hesitation in using resources from other nations to help find the plane.
The Chinese government continues to help Malaysia in searching for the plane, however, as a plurality of those on board possessed Chinese citizenship. Authorities announced today that the search for the missing flight, moved a dramatic 680 miles north last week as new radar information suggested the plane flew faster than previously anticipated, had yet to turn up any significant leads.
The Chinese government, which has increased its presence in the international search, announced Saturday that it had spotted three objects in the search area, though they have not been retrieved from the water and could not be confirmed to have anything to do with Flight 370. According to officials, however, the debris matches the colors of the plane. According to Chinese newspaper Xinhua, a search vehicle found thee objects–one red, one white, and one orange–but they could not yet be retrieved or confirmed as part of the plane.
The search, some officials warned, could take years before confirming the whereabouts of the plane. None of the debris objects found in the search so far have been confirmed to have come from Flight 370.
Relatives of those on the flight in Beijing organized a protest outside the Malaysian embassy in the Chinese capital demanding more concrete facts about the case last week, suggesting that the Malaysian government’s claim that the plane fell in the southwestern Indian Ocean and there were “beyond a reasonable doubt” no survivors was not yet confirmed.