Missing Plane Was Hundreds Of Miles Off Course
(CNN) The missing Malaysia Airlines jumbo jet appears to have been hundreds of miles off course and the tracking transponder appears to have been turned off.
The Malaysian Air Force has traced the last known location of flight 370 to a spot above Pulau Perak, a very small island in the Straits of Malacca and hundreds of miles from the usual Kuala Lumpur to Beijing flight path.
That information was given to CNN by a a senior Malaysian Air Force official who is not authorized to speak to the media.
If the Malaysian Air Force data cited by the source is correct, the aircraft was flying the opposite direction from its scheduled destination and on the opposite side of the Malay Peninsula from its scheduled route.
Previous accounts had the aircraft losing touch with air traffic control near the coast of Vietnam.
The disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 does not appear to be related to terrorism, the head of the international police organization Interpol said Tuesday.
“The more information we get, the more we’re inclined to conclude that it was not a terrorist incident” Interpol Secretary General Ronald Noble said at a news conference in Lyon, France.
Noble’s comments echo those of a U.S. intelligence official, who told CNN on Monday that indications increasingly point toward an explanation other than terrorism.
Among the evidence pointing in that direction, Noble said: news from Malaysian authorities that one of two people said to be traveling on stolen passports, an Iranian, was trying to travel to his mother in Germany.
Further, there’s no evidence to suggest either was connected to any terrorist organizations, according to Malaysian investigators.
However, CIA Director John Brennan said his agency is not yet willing to discount the possibility of a terror link in what he called a “very disturbing” mystery.
“No, we’re not ruling it out. Not at all,” he said Tuesday at a Council on Foreign Relations event.
The two passengers who have dominated headlines the last two days entered Malaysia using valid Iranian passports, Noble said at a news conference. But they used stolen Austrian and Italian passports to board the missing Malaysian plane, he said.
Noble gave their names and ages as Pouri Nourmohammadi, 18, and Delavar Syed Mohammad Reza, 29.
Malaysian police had earlier identified Nourmohammadi, using a slightly different name and age, and said they believed he was trying to migrate to Germany.
Inspector General Khalid Abu Bakar of the Royal Malaysian Police said it doesn’t appear the younger Iranian posed a threat.