MANILA (Mabuhay) – No Filipino was aboard a Malaysia Airlines flight that went missing while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing early Saturday.
A statement released by the airline before noon (Manila time) did not indicate any Filipino aboard Flight MH370.
“The flight was carrying a total number of 239 passengers and crew – comprising 227 passengers (including two infants), 12 crew members. The passengers were of 14 different nationalities,” it said, adding these included:
- China: 152 plus 1 infant
- Malaysia: 38
- Indonesia: 12
- Australia: 7
- France: 3
- United States: 3 people plus 1 infant
- New Zealand: 2
- Ukraine: 2
- Canada: 2
- Russia: 1
- Italy: 1 (Might possess stolen passport)
- Taiwan: 1
- Netherlands: 1
- Austria: 1 (Might possess stolen passport)
Earlier, airline officials said in a statement that Flight MH370 disappeared Saturday at 2:40 a.m. local time.
The plane, a Boeing 777-200, left Kuala Lumpur just after midnight Saturday, and had been due to arrive in Beijing at 6:30 a.m. local time.
It also branded as “speculation” information that the aircraft has landed in Nanming.
The airline said the flight was piloted by Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, a Malaysian working for the airline since 1981 and who had logged 18,365 flying hours.
It said First Officer Fariq Ab.Hamid, a Malaysian, 27, logged 2,763 flying hours and joined Malaysia Airlines in 2007.
“Our focus now is to work with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilize its full support. Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected passengers and crew and their family members,” the airline said.
Earlier, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs on Saturday said it is now checking if Filipinos were among the 239 people aboard a Malaysian Airlines flight bound for Beijing that lost contact with air traffic control after leaving Malaysia’s capital Kuala Lumpur.
Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said they are now checking with the Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.
In a update released Saturday morning, Malaysia Airlines said the flight carrying a total of 239 people – 227 passengers, including two infants, and 12 crew members.
However, it assured that Malaysia Airlines has called the relatives of the passengers and crew.
“Malaysia Airlines is currently working with the authorities who have activated their Search and Rescue team to locate the aircraft,” it added.
It also said the public may contact +603 7884 1234.
Media queries may be directed to +603 8777 5698/ +603 8787 1276.
Next-of-kin may head to the Support Facility Building at KLIA’s South Support Zone. For directions, call 03 8787 1269. (MNS)