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Russia’s top diplomat blasts Dutch-led probe of MH17 crash for lack of transparency

June 06, 14:16 UTC+3

Russia’s top diplomat noted that the Dutch-led investigation team has not included representatives from Malaysia, which owned the aircraft

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Reconstructed wreckage of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17

Reconstructed wreckage of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17

© AP Photo/Peter Dejong

KALININGRAD, June 6. /TASS/. The Dutch-led investigation into the MH17 disaster in July 2014 in Donbass is not transparent, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday.

"Transparency is required here, and we do not see it in the investigation led by the Netherlands," Lavrov emphasized. "Certainly, there is the need for transparency that will demonstrate facts rather than conclusions, like those used by the United States now to "prove" things that cannot be proven."

Lavrov recalled that shortly after the crash, Russia initiated the investigation which should be carried out in line with the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation and by experts of the International Civil Aviation Organization, or at least with its direct participation."

"We backed the UN Security Council’s Resolution calling for an unbiased investigation in line with international rules and charged the UN Secretary-General to report to the UNSC on the course of the investigation and its results," the foreign minister explained. "After the resolution was passed in July 2014, not a single report has been submitted to the UN Security Council."

Russia’s top diplomat noted that the Dutch-led investigation team has not included representatives from Malaysia, which owned the aircraft.

‘Strange’ investigation

Lavrov stressed that self-defense militias of Donbass had ensured investigators’ access to the crash scene. "By the way, the militias found the "black boxes" and despite strong suspicions that they would manipulate them they handed them over to the investigators safe and sound."

"Many interesting events occurred later, which were inconsistent with the traditional rules of investigation of crashes of this kind," he said. "A significant number of debris and belongings, and as was found out later, the bodies were left unattended at the crash scene. The investigators left this scene. After a long time, they started saying that they need to collect everything that remained there… Those who keep track of this and want to establish the truth know everything."

Russia has offered its assistance in the investigation many times, Lavrov noted. The Russian defense manufacturer Almaz-Antey said it had obtained the so-called primary unprocessed radar images of the airspace in the area of the Boeing’s crash from one of its enterprises. This data was transferred to Russia’s qualified agencies for examination and in late October 2016 they were sent to the Dutch side.

However, the investigators remained cool towards Russia’s offer, Lavrov said. "It is difficult for me to understand why, only if the investigators had some objective that had been set beforehand."

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing-777 passenger airliner on a flight from the Dutch capital of Amsterdam to the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur crashed in the area of hostilities between local militias and Kiev’s government troops in east Ukraine’s Donetsk region in July 2014. All 298 people aboard the airliner died in the catastrophe. Most of the air crash’s victims were Dutch nationals.

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