Russia calls for continued investigation into MH17 crash

Moscow, Oct 14 (IANS) Russia has urged a continued investigation into the crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over conflict-hit eastern Ukraine in July 2014, in which all 298 people on board were killed.

“Of course we are ready (for continuing investigation),” Xinhua quoted Maria Zakharova, the spokeswoman of foreign ministry, as saying on Tuesday, who insisted a number of questions still remain unanswered regarding the incident.

“This situation could be overcome by continuing a properly adjusted investigation, with involvement of countries possessing materials that can shed some light on the MH17 disaster,” Zakharova said.

The spokeswoman said it is indisputable that Ukraine was directly responsible for not closing its airspace to civil aviation flights.

While noting that Russia is studying the final report released on Tuesday by the Dutch Safety Board (DSB), Zakharova said Russia has always expressed willingness but was refused to participate in previous investigations “on different pretexts”.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte urged Russia to cooperate into the investigation, while from the very beginning Russia was prepared to engage in this work, Zakharova said.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also criticised the investigation as “biased and purposefully partial”.

“We have never concealed that we are very frustrated by the fact that Russian experts have not been engaged in this investigation,” Peskov said.

He said information obtained by Moscow, in particular experiment reports done by Russian Almaz-Antei missile manufacturer, was not considered by the investigation team.

Almaz-Antei published its investigation results on Tuesday, saying the plane was shot down by a 9M38 surface-to-air missile from the vicinity of Ukraine’s Zaroshchenskoye settlement controlled by the Ukrainian military.

Additional criminal investigation will be carried out by the Joint Investigation Team to establish the exact launching location of the missile.

The Joint Investigation Team is led by the Dutch national police and prosecutor, with the participation of specialists from Australia, Belgium, Malaysia, Ukraine.

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