The son of missing Malaysia Airlines pilot Zaharie Ahmad Shah says he's ignoring speculation about his father's role in the jet's disappearance.
(USA Today)-- The son of missing Malaysia Airlines pilot Zaharie Ahmad Shah says he's ignoring speculation about his father's role in the loss of Flight 370 and awaiting confirmation that it crashed.
Ahmad Seth, 26, spoke with New Strait Times, an English-language newspaper in Malaysia, in his first public remarks since the plane's mysterious disappearance March 8. His father, a captain for Malaysia Airlines, was in the pilot's seat with a co-pilot on the flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
Seth, described as a language student, said he was aware of speculation and theories that his 53-year-old father was a political fanatic or opposition loyalist who may have diverted the flight himself for unknown reasons.
"I've read everything online. But I've ignored all the speculation. I know my father better,'' he said.
Seth said that he and his father "may not be as close, as he travels so much.''
"But,'' he added, "I understand him.''
New Strait Times described the son as calm and composed but visibly tired during an interview at his home Tuesday night. It said he revealed no resentment of those who portray his father as responsible for the tragic loss of the Boeing 777 jetliner and all 239 people aboard.
It said personal friends paid a visit to Seth during the interview. His family members — mother Faizah Khanum Mustafa Khan and elder siblings Ahmad Idris and Aishah — have not spoken publicly, the newspaper said.
Seth said he was not surprised by the televised announcement Monday by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak that the aircraft had been lost in the southern Indian Ocean off Perth, Australia.
He said he was resigned to that outcome after having waited 18 days for word of the plane's fate. But he said he was still clinging to a glimmer of hope.
"Now, we are just waiting for the right confirmation,'' he said, referring to evidence of wreckage or bodies. "I will believe it when I see the proof in front of my eyes.''
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