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THE HAGUE, September 24. /TASS/. The international team investigating the crash of Malaysian Airlines MH17 flight over Ukraine last July has been in cooperation with Russia, Dutch Public Prosecution Service spokesman Wim de Bruin told TASS on Thursday.
Briun refrained from specifying details of the cooperation and did not name the agencies, organisations or companies the investigators are in touch with, assuring that he could not provide more detailed information but that the contacts were underway.
Earlier, TASS sent a letter to the Dutch Public Prosecution Service asking whether the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) would be ready to remove fragments of the Boeing 777 airliner, which the prosecution service of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) had collected (2,500 fragments - eds. TASS), from Ukraine. By the time of reporting, TASS has received no reply.
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.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry has repeatedly underscored its dissatisfaction with the way the investigation is carried out.