Malaysia’s defence minister has sparked outrage after agreeing the tragedy of missing MH370 flight a ‘blessing in disguise’. It is the latest in a series of blunders by Hishammuddin Hussein as the international search continues almost a month after the Boeing 777 went missing.
Last night, a Kuala Lumpur-based journalist Ismail Amsyar tweeted the minister saying: ‘MH370 is a blessing in disguise for all of us. I understand now the beauty of unity, the sweetness of having each other.’
In a response which has caused international uproar, Mr Hussein said: ‘Right u are :)’
Outraged Twitter users hit back attacking the ‘inappropriate’ tweet, which has since been deleted, as families continue to fight for information on the mystery. Mr Amsyar, who received death threats following the exchange, this morning apologised ‘from the bottom of [his] heart’ for the comment.
Mr Hussein has yet to comment on the incident.
It is widely believed the controversy over MH370 has scuppered his chances of succeeding his cousin, Malaysia’s prime minister, as leader of the ruling party – with some claiming it has tarnished his entire political career. He came under fire when once asked to defend the ‘disorderly’ plane search, as he retorted: ‘It’s only confusion if you want it to be seen to be confusion.’
Days later, he lashed out at a journalist for posing the same question, claiming it was ‘irresponsible’ to make the allegation. He said: ‘I have got a lot of feedback saying we have been very responsible in our action. It’s very irresponsible of you to say that.’