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Final investigation report on Malaysian airliner’s crash to be ready next summer

September 19, 2014, 20:45 UTC+3 UN
Frans Timmermans said nothing would obstruct the completion of the investigation even the inability to conduct it at the site of the crash in Ukraine’s southeast
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Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans

Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans


UNITED NATIONS, September 19. /ITAR-TASS/. A final report on the results of the investigation into the crash of the Malaysian passenger aircraft in Ukraine two months ago will be presented next summer, Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans said.

The Boeing 777-200 of the Malaysia Airlines en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed on July 17 in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk Region, some 60 km (over 37 miles) from the Russian border, in the zone of combat operations between the Donetsk self-defense forces and the Ukrainian army. All the passengers and crewmembers onboard the aircraft - 298 people - died. Most of the passengers - 196 people - were Dutch citizens.

Speaking at the UN Security Council’s session in New York on Friday, Timmermans said nothing would obstruct the completion of the investigation even the inability to conduct it at the site of the crash in Ukraine’s southeast.

The top Dutch diplomat also said that the investigation into the crash is independent and no other party has the power to influence it.

Last week Alexander Lukashevich, a spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, said it seemed that the international commission investigating the crash of the Malaysian airliner in Ukraine had been intentionally dragging out the investigation as a result of pressure from some Western powers.

“We point out that the process of the [report’s] publication and the process itself is delayed on purpose by the international commission,” Lukashevich said. “The presented report does not hold any convincing information on the circumstances of the airliner’s crash and the most important expertize was not conducted.”

The Dutch Safety Board, which is leading the investigation and coordinating the international team of investigators, said in its preliminary report published on Tuesday that “Flight MH17 with a Boeing 777-200 operated by Malaysia Airlines broke up in the air probably as the result of structural damage caused by a large number of high-energy objects that penetrated the aircraft from outside.”

Chairman of the Dutch Safety Board Tjibbe Joustra said that the findings presented in Tuesday’s report were preliminary and the investigation’s final report would be published by mid-July next year.

“The preliminary report issues the first findings in an ongoing investigation,” Joustra said. “From this point on, the investigation team will be working towards producing its final report. The [Dutch Safety] Board aims to publish this report within one year of the date of the crash.”

International experts from the Netherlands, Australia and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) began arriving at the airliner crash site near the settlement of Hrabove, 79 km (49 miles) north of Donetsk, since July 31 in search of the missing bodies of passengers and aircraft’s remains. Before that, they had not been able to carry out their search operation for a week over incessant fighting between the local self-defense militia and pro-Kiev troops.

The search resumed after the warring sides agreed on a ceasefire around the airliner wreckage area and on a security corridor for the arrival of experts and their work at the crash site.

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