The United States today has refuted rumours that missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 could have landed at its military base on the remote island of Diego Garcia, the Daily Mirror reported.
The English daily quoted a spokesman for the US embassy in Kuala Lumpur as saying that there was no truth to this speculation.
“There is no indication that flight MH370 flew anywhere near the Maldives or Diego Garcia,” Daily Mirror quoted the spokesman who told The Star in an email.
“Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 did not land in Diego Garcia,” he said.
The Daily Mirror reported that there had been rumours circulating that MH370 could have headed for the small coral atoll in the Indian Ocean after going off-course.
Flight MH370 departed from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport on March 8 bound for Beijing.
The aircraft, carrying 12 crew members and 227 passengers, dropped off the radar at 1.20am and has not been located since.
More than 20 nations are involved in the biggest search and rescue operation ever to locate the missing aircraft, believed to have gone down in the southern Indian Ocean, off Western Australia.
Earlier today, New Straits Times reported that Fariq Abdul Hamid, the co-pilot of missing flight MH370, attempted to make a phone call from his mobile phone while the aircraft was flying over Penang.
In an exclusive, the daily reported that Fariq’s attempt ended abruptly as MH370 was flying away from the telecommunications tower.
This is the latest breakthrough in the ongoing criminal investigation as police traced the source of the call to Fariq’s mobile phone.
According to NST’s report, the aircraft was flying at an altitude low enough for the nearest telecommunications tower to pick up Fariq’s phone signal.
However, it has not been ascertained who he was attempting to call, as sources declined to divulge the information, the daily reported.
The daily also reported that Fariq’s last communication was through the WhatsApp messenger application at 11.30pm on March 7, just before he boarded Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 for the journey to Beijing.
“Checks on Fariq’s phone history showed that the last person he spoke to was one of his regular contacts (a number that frequently appears on his outgoing phone logs).
“This call was made no more than two hours before the flight took off at 12.41am from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport,” NST reported.
Although investigations have been ongoing since March 8, police have not cleared either the crew members or the passengers. – April 12, 2014.