Chinese Court Commences Hearings For Lawsuit On Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370

A Beijing court initiated compensation hearings on Monday for the Chinese families of passengers who were aboard Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, which disappeared under mysterious circumstances over the Indian Ocean nearly a decade ago, as reported by the plaintiffs.

A Beijing court initiated compensation hearings on Monday for the Chinese families of passengers who were aboard Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, which disappeared under mysterious circumstances over the Indian Ocean nearly a decade ago, as reported by the plaintiffs.
More than 150 Chinese passengers were on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared during its journey from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014.

Malaysian investigators have not dismissed the possibility that the plane might have been intentionally diverted from its course. Additionally, debris, either confirmed or suspected to be from the aircraft, has been found along the coast of Africa and on islands in the Indian Ocean.

The Malaysian national airline, Boeing, Rolls-Royce (the aircraft engine provider), and German insurer Allianz Insurance are all defendants in a case filed by numerous families at the Chaoyang District People’s Court in Beijing. The lawsuit pertains to the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. Despite the identification of some aircraft parts washing ashore on the eastern coasts of Tanzania and South Africa, the wreckage of the plane has not been located.

On Monday, a Chinese court is set to begin hearings on compensation claims from families of MH370 passengers, asserting that the incident not only took their loved ones but also caused financial hardship for some. Jiang, 50, mentioned in an interview ahead of the hearings at the Chaoyang District People’s Court in Beijing, that, after almost 10 years, families who declined settlement offers have not received apologies or compensation. Jiang is suing Malaysia Airlines, its insurer, Boeing, and the plane’s engine manufacturer, holding them accountable under Chinese law. Approximately 40 Chinese families are taking legal action with similar appeals, covering issues like compensation, apologies, psychological support, and continued search efforts for the plane. Hearings are anticipated to continue until December 5, with Jiang’s case scheduled for Friday. Among the 200 people on the flight, 153 were Chinese nationals.

Speculation and conspiracy theories surround the disappearance of the airliner, MH370. Numerous reports have cast suspicion on the pilot, Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, suggesting potential intentional actions, an accusation Malaysia has not embraced and the pilot’s family vehemently denies. The lawsuit is seeking $45,000 in compensation under the Montreal Convention and the establishment of a fund for ongoing search efforts. Similar lawsuits have been filed in Malaysia, with the government agreeing in 2021 to a compensation payout of $320,000 to family members of two victims. It’s reported that 109 beneficiaries have received partial compensation, while the remaining 130 families have received undisclosed full compensation.

In July 2018, Malaysia published a report on its investigation into MH370, determining that the reason for the plane’s disappearance remained unknown. The report did establish that MH370 deviated from its intended route, turned back toward Malaysia upon entering Vietnamese airspace, and its final signal indicated a trajectory toward the Indian Ocean. The investigation found no indications of financial stress or behavioural changes in the captain or first officer before the flight.

Both Malaysian and Vietnamese air traffic controllers were criticized for their failure to initiate initial emergency calls, leading to delayed search and rescue operations. Despite an extensive multinational effort covering 120,000 square kilometres of ocean, one of the largest searches in aviation history, the original mission concluded in 2017, and MH370 is still officially classified as missing.