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Russian envoy to UN urges Kiev to respond over directing MH17 flight into war zone

July 30, 2015, 3:55 UTC+3 THE UNITED NATIONS
"Why have you not presented notes of talks between your defence air traffic control regulators? That can be called ‘impunity’, russian envoy asked
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THE UNITED NATIONS, July 30. /TASS/. Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin has urged Kiev to respond over directing the Malaysian Airlines MH17 flight into the area of hostilities.

Churkin expressed his bewilderment over Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavel Klimkin’s position at a session of the UN Security Council.

"Why were civil airliners directed into the zone where hostilities were raging?" Churkin asked Klimkin. "The Malaysian Boeing passengers could have been just unaware you were involved in an armed conflict. After all, the Malaysian aviation authorities could have been unaware you were having an armed conflict. But you knew it too well. Why were you doing it? Because of greed or due to other considerations? Why have you not presented notes of talks between your defence air traffic control regulators? That can be called ‘impunity’."

"Mr Klimkin, have you punished anyone for it? Was anyone in Ukraine punished for it?" Churkin went on to ask the Ukrainian foreign minister. However, then the Russian envoy to the world organisation expressed the hope that the investigation "will look into it" and the hand of justice would get to "those who shot down the plane and to those who directed it into the area of hostilities."

Ukraine’s foreign minister left Churkin’s questions without answers.

On Wednesday, Russia vetoed the United Nations Security Council resolution on establishing an international tribunal to prosecute persons guilty of the MH17 plane crash over Ukraine on July 17, 2014.

Eleven Security Council members voted for the Malaysia-proposed draft, which, in fact, was enough for its adoption but Russia used its right of veto. Another three countries, including Angola, Venezuela and China, abstained from voting.

After the voting Churkin said the draft resolution "lacks any legal or precedent basis."

"We have been explaining it to our colleagues and have been asking to mull over options," he said adding the authors of the document "refused to act in the spirit of cooperation."

"In our opinion, goals of political propaganda seem to have become more significant than practical ones to them," he 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 from the Russian border, in the zone of combat operations between the Donetsk self-defence forces and the Ukrainian army. All the passengers and crewmembers aboard the aircraft - 298 people from ten countries - died. Two-thirds of the passengers - 196 people - were Dutch citizens.

On July 21, 2014 the UN Security Council demanded a thorough and unbiased investigation.

In early September, the Dutch Safety Board said in its preliminary report that the MH17 flight 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. A surface-to-air or air-to-air missile that allegedly hit the plane is considered the biggest factor behind the crash.

Kiev authorities and militias of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic have blamed each other for shooting down the airliner.

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