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Malaysian Police: Two men traveling with stolen passports had no terror links

One of the men with a fake passport wanted to migrate to Germany to reunite with his mother, and has no apparent terror links so far.
By Ananth Baliga   |   March 11, 2014 at 7:39 AM  |  Updated March 11, 2014 at 8:01 AM   |   Comments

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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, March 11 (UPI) -- Malaysian Police said that the two men traveling aboard the missing Malaysian Airlines flight 370 with stolen passports have no apparent terror links.

Police officials identified one of the men as Pouria Nour Mohammad Mehrdad, a 19-year-old Iranian national who was possibly migrating to Germany. Inspector-General Khalid Abu Bakar said that Mehrdad was traveling on a stolen passport, reported stolen in Thailand last year by 30-year-old Austrian Christian Kozel.

The police were able to identify Mehrdad, when his mother called Malaysian authorities shortly after hearing about the the aircraft's disappearance Saturday.

"We believe he was trying to migrate to Germany," Abu Bakar said. "His mother was expecting him to arrive. She contacted us here, so that is how we know he is the one."

Speaking in Paris on Tuesday, Interpol Secretary General Ronald Noble identified the other Iranian as Delavar Seyed Mohammadreza. According to Noble, the two men swapped their Iranian passports for stolen Italian and Austrian passports at Kuala Lumpur.

Search for the missing airplane has been widened from a 57-mile radius around where the plane disappeared to a 115-mile radius. The Malaysian Police chief said that the any human involvement was limited to four possible theories: hijacking, sabotage, psychological problems or personal problems with passengers or crew.

Currently there are 40 ships and 34 aircraft searching the seas off Vietnam and Malaysia and search teams from around ten countries are involved in the search for Malaysia Airlines MH370.


[Wall Street Journal]
[BBC]

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Topics: Ronald Noble
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