There are situations when countries set aside certain animosities to help out and the ongoing mystery of the missing Malaysian Airlines plane is one of those. China expressed its thanks,indirectly though, towards Japan as they announced they are sending four military planes to aid in the continued search for the plane, missing since Saturday, that had 239 people on board.
“If other countries can, and are willing, to send ships to participate in search work, we welcome it and express our thanks,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang when asked about Japan’s offer of help. Relations between the two have been tense due to territorial and historical issues. Gang also said that an incident like this brings together the international community as they have a “shared concern” over the missing plane. Malaysia Airlines has said that there were 14 different nationalities on board, including 154 Chinese, 38 Malaysians, 7 Indonesians, 6 Australians, five Indians, four French and three Americans.
Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said they are sending an Air Self-Defense Force C-130 transport plane to help with the search and this will be followed by three other aircraft. This is also the first time that Self Defense Force personnel will be sent to another country to help search for missing aircraft. Onodera said that the SDF’s large experience in search operations will be valuable to the Malaysian government right now. “There is an urgent need for help as soon as possible,” he said.
[ via Reuters ]