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Foreign Ministry: investigation team on MH17 plane crash shows ideological bias

May 26, 2018, 8:04 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Maria Zakharova noted the absence of inquiries for Kiev to transfer radar data and information about the actions of dispatch services

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MOSCOW, May 25. /TASS/. The Joint Investigation Team’s (JIT) accusation of Russia over its involvement in the Boeing plane crash in Donbass shows that the search for those responsible was initially ideologically biased, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.

"The fact that the JIT released its intermediary findings and blamed Russia for the involvement in the death of the MH17 flight without waiting for our reaction to them shows the unwillingness of the investigators to seriously study the materials submitted by the Russian Federation, which reconfirms the conclusion about the initial ideological bias in the search for those responsible," the diplomat stated.

Zakharova highlighted that the Dutch side refused to assess the core circumstance that led to the tragedy - "the fact that Ukraine’s authorities did not close the airspace for civil aviation flights over the domestic conflict zone." She added that the absence of inquiries for Kiev to transfer radar data and information about the actions of dispatch services confirms the ideological bias of the investigation.

The Boeing-777 passenger plane operated by Malaysian Airlines crashed on July 17, 2014, en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur in the east of the Donetsk region. As many as 283 passengers and 15 crew members - citizens of 10 states, including 38 Australians - were killed in the crash. The JIT, which includes experts from Australia, Belgium, Malaysia, the Netherlands and Ukraine, is investigating the tragedy. On May 24, the experts released an intermediary report in which they stated that the missile system that was used to launch the missile that downed the Boeing could be brought from Russia and be assigned to the 53rd air defense missile brigade.

Russia refuted the JIT’s accusations. In particular, the Russian Defense Ministry stated that no missile complex of the Armed Forces ever crossed the Russian-Ukrainian border. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that the JIT’s investigation reminds of the situation with the Skripals’ case by its lack of evidence.

Still, on May 25 the Australian and Dutch governments officially blamed Russia for the involvement in the Boeing crash and stated their intention to held Moscow internationally responsible. They also addressed Russia suggesting it should engage in negotiations to find a proper solution and warned that the case could be transferred to an international court or organization.

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