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Netherlands agrees to lead investigation of flight MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine

The Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans gave a promise that the Dutch would fulfill their duties to the best of their ability

UNITED NATIONS, July 22, /ITAR-TASS/. Netherlands has agreed to take on leadership in investigating the circumstances of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine, the Dutch Foreign Minister, Frans Timmermans said Monday as he addressed a meeting of the UN Security Council.

Timmermans hailed the Security Council resolution that called for a scrupulous international investigation of the tragedy and he said the Netherlands would closely cooperate with the countries concerned, the UN and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) when investigation began.

He also said he was fully aware of how huge the responsibility assumed by the Netherlands was and he gave a promise that the Dutch would fulfill their duties to the best of their ability.

Russia hopes the Netherlands leading role will make it possible to conduct a genuinely fair investigation of the disaster in Ukraine, Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said upon the end of the Security Council session.

“I think it’s good news the Netherlands has taken a leading role upon itself in this investigation, since the majority of people who died in that disaster - more than 130 individuals - were Dutch nationals and this is really a huge tragedy for the country.”

“I hope the Dutch leadership (of the investigative efforts) will make it possible to have a truly unbiased international investigation and that’s something we wanted from the very start,” Churkin said.

Earlier on Monday, the UN Security Council passed a resolution that calls for a thorough and independent international investigation of the tragedy.

Ukraine’s interim Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk appointed by the Verkhovna Rada said Kiev was ready to hand over the steering role in the investigation of the MH17 flight disaster to the Netherlands.

The crash of the jet in the eastern Ukrainian Donetsk region took away the lives of 298 people.