Dutch FM pushing for MH17 tribunal in New York

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Minister Bert Koenders will be discussing the establishment of an international tribunal to prosecute those responsible for the downing of flight MH17 at the United Nations in New York on Tuesday and Wednesday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Monday night. He will consult with New-Zealand, the chairman of the UN Security Council, who will decide whether the establishment of the tribunal will be put to a vote on Wednesday, the Volkskrant reports.

Koenders said that he will "go to extremes to prosecute the perpetrators". According to him, the fact that Malaysia, Ukraine, Belgium and Australia supports the establishment, makes for "broad international support for the prosecution process". The Minister stated that the MH17 disaster does not only concern the affected countries, but the entire international community due to the importance of passenger aircraft safety. "We can not take away the sorrow of the bereaved, but we an do everything to try and get the perpetrators to justice", Koenders said.

The Russian United Nations Ambassador Vitali Tsjoerkin has announced that Russia will definitely vote against the establishment of a MH17 tribunal, the Volkskrant report. As Russia has veto power within the Council,  a "no" vote would block the establishment of the tribunal.

Tsjoerkin said that he hopes the proposal is not put to a vote. And if it is, the initiators will be politically and practically responsible for the consequences. The establishment of a tribunal will only drive Russia and the West farther apart, and according to Tsjoerking that is a "dangerous confrontation" that would have far-reaching consequences.