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Aviation Chief Likens Holders of Fake Passports to Mario Balotelli

MILAN, ITALY - MARCH 02:  Mario Balotelli attends the Serie A match between AC Milan and Juventus at San Siro Stadium on March 2, 2014 in Milan, Italy.  (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)
Claudio Villa/Getty Images
Mark PattersonFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 24, 2017

Malaysia’s civil aviation chief Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, speaking to media about the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 flight, has likened two passengers travelling on board on fake passports to AC Milan and Italy striker Mario Balotelli.

The investigator was trying to explain that the two men on the flight between Malaysia and China did not have an Asian appearance. Channel 4 have a copy of the clip:  

The Guardian records the transcript:

“It is confirmed now that they are not Asian looking men,” he said.

A reporter asked Rahman to say “roughly” what they looked like. He replied “Do you know a footballer by the name of Balotelli [using an approximate pronunciation of the name]”. 

The flight disappeared off radar screens on Friday night and has not been seen since. The search for the plane continues, and has provided a comprehensive summary of what we do and don't know about the situation.

Men with stolen passports on missing plane were 'not Asian-looking'. Investigator then says they look like Mario Balotelli! #whyalwaysme

— Ben Smith (@BenSmithBBC) March 10, 2014

'Do you know what Italian footballer Balotelli looks like?', says head of inv. when asked what do suspects look like if not Asians #MH370

— Sergi Vicente (@sergivicente) March 10, 2014

How totally bizarre that football player Mario Balotelli referenced as what one of the fake passport holders looked like #MalaysiaAirlines

— Lawrence Champness (@champy) March 10, 2014

 Why always Mario Balotelli, indeed?

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