Dozens of ships and aircraft have failed to find any piece of the missing Malaysia Airways Boeing 777 that vanished more than two days ago above waters south of Vietnam.

Malaysian maritime officials have found some oil slicks in the South China Sea and have sent a sample to a lab to see if it came from the plane.

Hundreds of distraught relatives were gathered in a hotel in Beijing, waiting to be flown to Malaysia. Of the 227 passengers, two-thirds were Chinese. There were also 38 passengers and 12 crew members from Malaysia, and others from elsewhere in Asia, Europe and North America.

As hope fades for relatives of the 239 people who were aboard Flight MH370, attention is focused on how two passengers managed to board the aircraft using stolen passports.