MH370, which was flying from Kuala Lumpur Beijing on March 8, 2014, mysteriously vanished with 239 people on board. Captain Zaharie Shah last communicated with air traffic control at 1.19am when the plane was flying over the South China Sea. However, moments later the plane vanished from civilian radars, never to be seen again.
Shockingly, in the days following its disappearance, Chinese journalists received a chilling encrypted email.
The sender, an unheard of terror group who called themselves the “Chinese Martyrs’ Brigade”.
The email simply read: “You kill one of our clan, we will kill 100 of you as payback.”
However, the email provided no details of how the doomed jet was brought down and was untraceable because it was delivered through an anonymous, encrypted Hushmail service.
Former transport minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters at Kuala Lumpur Airport on March 10, 2014, that the email was not being taken seriously.
He said: “There is no sound or credible grounds to justify their claims.”
Others had made a connection between the claims and an incident that occurred in the city of Kunming on March 1 between Uighurs and the Han Chinese population.
During a knife attack, 29 people were killed and 140 more injured.
China has completed what it says was “de-radicalization” training in its western Xinjiang region, officials said in Beijing, as the government sought to defend the widespread detention of ethnic minorities.
Top officials for the predominantly Muslim region of Xinjiang made the claim Monday during a briefing to promote policies they said were responsible for ending a spate of terrorist attacks. The briefing came less than a week after the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that would sanction Chinese officials over perceived human rights abuses in the region, including what the United Nations says is the detention of as many as 1 million mostly Uighur Muslims.
“All the students in the centers studying the national common language, law, vocational skills and de-radicalization courses have all graduated,” said Shohrat Zakir, Xinjiang’s governor and No. 2 official. While that’s further than Zakir went in a similar briefing in July when he said “the majority” of people had returned to their homes, he provided no numbers or other supporting evidence. He didn’t say whether the “graduates” had been released.
It wasn’t immediately possible to verify the government’s claims, which have been previously questioned by activists. Independent analysis of satellite imagery, procurement records and government hiring announcements, as well as reporting by foreign media outlets including Bloomberg News, show that China has build a network of prison-like facilities across the region to house large populations.
The House action last week came after a pair of high-profile leaks of internal Communist Party documents illustrating a broad campaign to implement and conceal the detention program. China has denounced the U.S. legislation as an inappropriate attempt to interfere in what it argues is a reasonable effort to fight terrorism and religious extremism.
Beijing on Thursday lashed out after President Donald Trump signed a law Wednesday calling for sanctions to punish Chinese officials for human rights abuses against that country's Uighur Muslim minority.
The latest bout in the ongoing war of words between the world's two largest economies comes after allegations in excerpts of a book by former national security adviser John Bolton that Trump told China's leader, Xi Jinping, that he supported Beijing's construction of camps to detain Uighurs.
"We again urge the U.S. side to immediately correct its mistakes and stop using this Xinjiang-related law to harm China's interests and interfere in China's internal affairs," China's Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday, referring to the region in the northwest of the country where many Uighurs live.
"Otherwise, China will resolutely take countermeasures, and all the consequences arising therefrom must be fully borne by the United States," it added, without detailing what such countermeasures might entail.
China denies mistreatment of the Uighurs and responded to the latest U.S. move with anger, saying it was a malicious attack that "vilified" the human rights situation in Xinjiang.
Bolton wrote that according to an interpreter, "Trump said that Xi should go ahead with building the camps, which Trump thought was exactly the right thing to do."
Many countries have voiced their condemnation at the United Nations of China's treatment of Uighurs. The U.N. estimates that more than a million Muslims have been detained in the Xinjiang camps. China says the camps provide vocational training and are needed to fight extremism.
Bolton also asserts that Trump asked Xi to agree to trade policies that would help with his re-election bid in November. Responding to this claim, China said on Thursday that it had no intention of interfering in U.S. elections, according to foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian.
NBC News was not able to verify the claims in the book, which is due out Tuesday. The Justice Department has filed a lawsuit aimed at delaying publication, as well as an emergency application for a temporary restraining order to prevent publication.
Trump, meanwhile, has accused Bolton of publishing classified information in his book, and suggested he should face criminal charges. The White House has not directly responded to the charges but Thursday morning, Trump tweeted the book was "made up of lies & fake stories" and called his former adviser a "disgruntled boring fool."
Bolton entered the White House in spring 2018 but resigned a year later. Trump says he fired him.
Jung Gwang-il was a 36-year-old married father of two when a truck delivered him late one night to hell on earth.
“When we got there, I saw people who didn’t even look human, they looked like beasts,” he recalled. “It was extraordinarily frightening.”
It was April 2000. Jung had been a privileged seafood trader at a North Korean state-run company that did business with China. He was accused of espionage by a co-worker, arrested, and taken to one of the six terrifying political prison camps established by Kim Jong Un’s dictator grandfather in the late 1940s.
The “beasts” were inmates who “couldn’t walk properly because they’d been tortured and starved.”
Many of the men arriving with Jung at the mountain prison, Camp 15, also known as Yodok, wouldn’t survive the 16 daily hours of hard labor, usually dangerous logging, with little food and only light clothing in freezing temperatures. But conditions are even more horrific at remote and fearsome Camp 16, believed to be the worst in North Korea’s vast penal system, and a place no one has ever been known to escape.
Now, between defectors like Jung and the testimony of female detainees in a new UN report, the effort to expose North Korea’s murderous penal system might finally be working. Britain announced July 11 they were slapping sanctions on the country for its prison camps. North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un predictably went ballistic, calling it a “flagrant political plot to jump on the bandwagon of the United States’ inimical policy” — and inadvertently shined a light on camps he and his family have always denied existed.
An estimated 120,000 “enemies of the state” are warehoused in Soviet-style political prison gulags, but even “regular” prison camps are extraordinarily brutal. According to the July UN report, about 100 North Korean women who escaped to China and were forcibly repatriated suffered “appalling violations.”
“I did not sleep and worked because I did not want to be beaten. It was excruciating to a level that I even attempted to commit suicide,” said one of the women interviewed by UN probers.
The detainees reported forced nudity, invasive body searches, and sometimes torture and rape. Several women told UN officials that prison guards tried to cause pregnant prisoners to abort by beating them or making them do hard labor. There was also infanticide.
“Guards beat the infants to death or bury them alive after they are born,” wrote Roberta Cohen, the former chair of Committee for Human Rights in North Korea (HRNK), in an earlier report.
In Camp 15, an already emaciated Jung was barely able to walk after nine months of daily punishment that included waterboarding, being electrocuted while bound to a barber chair and so-called “pigeon torture” — tied to the wall for hours in such a way that he could not sit down nor stand up.