China Malaysia MH370 Missing Plane Australia Suicide Accident
A family member of a passenger on board Malaysia Airlines MH370 cries as he shouts slogans during a protestReuters

One hundred days ago, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 left Kuala Lumpur for a routine flight to Beijing. It never arrived. All 239 passengers and clue are assumed dead - except by some relatives, who cling to unlikely hopes that the plane was hijacked or flown to a secret military base, and a gigantic cover-up is concealing the truth. It has become the greatest aviation mystery of all time.

Some of the more outlandish claims are that the plane was abducted by aliens, been made invisible and flown to the Diego Garcia atoll, or was hijacked by terrorists who are planning to use it at a later date. So far none of the claims have been backed up by anything so mundane as evidence.

Based on what little IS known - that the plane's flight path appears to have been towards the southern Indian Ocean - the Australian government is searching a vast expanse of the ocean west of Perth, and estimates it will have spent US$90m (£50m) on the search by 2015.

Some of the families of those missing have received compensation payments but most have not received anything because the Malaysian government has not yet declared the plane lost.

"When we talk about the full payment, we have to wait until we announce the issue on the tragedy MH370 is over," says Malaysian deputy foreign minister Hamzah Zainudin, "Whether the plane is found, [or] whether we announce the plane is lost."

Families no longer receive updates about the search efforts and when they descended on the Beijing offices of Malaysia Airlines they were turned away.

Jiang Hui, a 41-year-old whose mother was on the plane, said: "Almost 100 days have gone and we continue to feel tortured, helpless, and angry.

"I am over 40 years old and I never knew the true meaning of suffering before. But over these past three months, I now know its meaning."