Uighur professor: I was not the one on MH370

A member of a rescue team looks through binoculars during a search and rescue operation to find the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, in the Straits of Malacca March 14, 2014. — Reuters pic
A member of a rescue team looks through binoculars during a search and rescue operation to find the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, in the Straits of Malacca March 14, 2014. — Reuters pic

PUTRAJAYA, March 15 — A Chinese Uighur mistakenly identified by a local daily as a passenger aboard missing flight MH370 has come out to deny he is the individual the newspaper said was being examined by police.

Sharing the same name as the Uighur passenger on the still-missing flight, the scholar said his name has been confused by the media with that of the other man.

“All my colleagues and my students can witness that I have been working here every day and I have not been out of Turkey since May, 2013. I have never been to Malaysia, either,” Dr Mamatjan Yasin (Yasheng Maimaitijiang in Chinese) told The Malay Mail Online via e-mail today.

The Malay Mail Online also contacted a colleague of his assistant, professor Dr Dundar Yilmaz, who corroborated Yasin’s account.

On Wednesday, Malay-language daily Harian Metro published a report with a detailed description of an assistant professor purportedly from Zirve University in Turkey, saying that the police and the Interpol are paying more attention to him because of his skills, quoting an unnamed source.

The Malay Mail Online also picked up on the Harian Metro report, and has since corrected this to reflect Mamatjan clarification.

A 35-year-old named Maimaitijiang/A was listed on the passenger manifest of MH370.

The Beijing-bound plane with 239 aboard has been missing since March 8.