Prime minister flies back early from India mission for MH17 talks

Nozzle of BUK missile found at MH17 crash site

A fragment of the BUK missile. Picture: JIT

Prime minister Mark Rutte is flying back from a trade mission to India a day early to discuss the new findings about the downing of flight MH17 with the rest of the cabinet on Friday.

On Thursday, the team in charge of the investigation said that the Buk missile which hit the passenger plane had come from a unit of the Russian army stationed in Kursk.

‘This is an important development and so I have decided to return to the Netherlands, because I want to chair the cabinet meeting at which this will be discussed,’ Rutte said in a reaction.




The official cabinet reaction to the new findings will be discussed on Friday morning, but foreign minister Stef Blok has already said ‘an important piece of the puzzle is in place’.

The four coalition parties say the issue should now be raised at the United Nations Security Council. In particular, they hope that Russia will be reprimanded for failing to cooperate sufficiently with the investigation.

Russia

Russia, meanwhile,  has issued a statement denying all responsibility for the air disaster, in which nearly 300 people died.

‘Not one Russian missile has crossed the border between Russia and Ukraine,’ Dutch media quoted the Russian ministry of defence as saying.

Piet Ploeg of the relatives foundation Vliegramp MH17 told broadcaster NOS he now expects the Dutch government to take action, for example, by taking Russia to court for complicity in the downing of the plane.

‘Until now, everyone has been cautious, but now it is being openly said that Russia kept the information presented today to itself, Ploeg said.


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