Malaysia working with US to get any satellite information on lost plane

Updated 20 May 2014
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Malaysia working with US to get any satellite information on lost plane

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is working with US investigators to establish if there is any satellite information that could help locate an airliner with 239 people on board that has been missing for nearly a week, a senior government official said.
"They indicated they were studying the possibility of satellite communication. Whatever they have and will share with us," Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, the head of Malaysia's Civil Aviation Authority, said.
Two sources close to the investigation said earlier that satellites picked up faint electronic pulses from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 after it went missing on Saturday, but the signals gave no information about where the stray jet was heading and little else about its fate.
Malaysia's transport minister meanwhile confirmed that the search for a missing Malaysia Airlines plane had been expanded into the Indian Ocean, but declined to comment on US reports that the jet had flown for hours after going missing.
"The aircraft is still missing, and the search area is expanding," said Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.
"Together with our international partners, we are pushing further east into the South China Sea and further into the Indian Ocean," he added.
Stressing that he could offer no new information on what happened to Flight MH370 which disappeared last Saturday, Hishammuddin refused to address US media reports, citing unidentified US officials, that the Boeing 777 had flown for an additional four or five hours after vanishing from civilian radar.
"We do not want to be drawn into specific remarks that unnamed officials have reportedly made in the media," he said.
The US reports were based on information that the plane's communication system continued to "ping" a satellite for up to four hours after it disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
A US Navy official said the destroyer USS Kidd was being sent to the Indian Ocean -- on the opposite side of the Malaysian peninsula from where contact was lost -- to investigate.
But Hishammuddin insisted that the main reason for widening the search field was the failure to locate the plane in the areas searched so far.
"A normal investigation becomes narrower with time," he said.
"But this is not a normal investigation. In this case, the information we have forces us to look further and further afield."


Protests across Spain as sexual abuse gang released on bail

Demonstrators shout slogans as they take part in a protest rally in Valencia on June 22, 2018, a day after a court ordered the release on bail of five men sentenced to nine years in prison for sexually abusing a young woman at Pamplona's bull-running festival. (AFP)
Updated 14 min 49 sec ago
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Protests across Spain as sexual abuse gang released on bail

  • All five, aged between 27 and 29, were convicted of sexual abuse in April but were acquitted of the more serious crime of sexual assault
  • Thousands of people had already protested in Pamplona, Bilbao, Barcelona and other cities on Thursday after the court issued its ruling

MADRID: Protesters hit the streets across Spain for the second day running on Friday, after five men sentenced to nine years in prison for sexually abusing a young woman at Pamplona’s bull-running festival were released on bail.
The men, who called themselves “The Pack” in a WhatsApp messaging group, had been accused of raping a woman, then 18, on July 7, 2016, at the start of the week-long San Fermin festival, which draws tens of thousands of visitors.
All five, aged between 27 and 29, were convicted of sexual abuse in April but were acquitted of the more serious crime of sexual assault — which includes rape — as the court did not consider the victim to have been subjected to intimidation or violence.
The men appealed their jail terms and a Pamplona court on Thursday ordered the five to be released on bail of 6,000 euros ($7,000) pending the outcome of the appeal.
Thousands of people of all ages demonstrated outside the justice ministry in central Madrid on Friday evening, shortly after the five men left jail after spending nearly two years in custody.
“I was stunned” by the court ruling, Aratz Beranoaguirre, a geologist, told AFP at the Madrid protest.
“Men have been educated with the idea that we can do anything, and with this ruling we have seen that you can rape and nothing happens.”
The crowd chanted: “They don’t believe us if they don’t kill us.”
Other protests were held in the southern city of Seville, the hometown of the five men, Pamplona — where the crowd held a large banner that read: “No is no. Justice!” outside of city hall — Granada, and elsewhere.
Thousands of people had already protested in Pamplona, Bilbao, Barcelona and other cities on Thursday after the court issued its ruling.
Women’s groups took to social media to call the protests with the slogan: “If the pack hits the streets, we will as well.”
Marches after the verdict in April brought tens of thousands of protesters out on to the streets.

“It is not fair that they are released with a sentence of nine years, and just a few days before San Fermin, they can even go there,” said Lucia Rodriguez, a 60-year-old protester in Madrid, referring to the upcoming running of the bulls festival which gets underway on July 6.
In its decision on Friday, the Navarre court said the five had been allowed out on bail because the social pressure on them made it “practically unthinkable” they would risk re-offending.
The men will remain under judicial monitoring. They have had their passports withdrawn and must report to court three times a week.
They are also banned from traveling to Madrid, where the victim lives.
One of the men is a policeman with the Guardia Civil — who is currently suspended — and another was once in the army. Several are “ultras” or hardcore fans of FC Sevilla.
The fact that the men videoed the attack on their smartphones and bragged about it within their WhatsApp group added to the outrage over the case.

The mayor of Pamplona, Joseba Asiron, said Friday his office would appeal the decision to release them, saying there was “a growing distance... between society itself and certain decisions taken by the courts.”
An online petition calling for the five to be kept behind bars had garnered 657,000 names by Friday night.
New socialist Justice Minister Dolores Delgado has not commented on the court decision, speaking only of a need to “change mentalities.”
The first step announced by the government of Pedro Sanchez, who took office earlier this month at the head of cabinet that includes 11 women, was to train magistrates in awareness about violence against women.
Noelia Garcia, 41, said she did not trust that the situation would change with a new government dominated by women.
“That is not enough. There needs to be a reform of the judicial system. Judges from another era need to be replaced,” she added at the Madrid protest.