Russia again blamed the Ukraine for shooting down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in 2014 in a surprise press conference held on Monday. According to the Russians, the BUK missile that shot down the Boeing was indeed produced in Russia, but was in Ukrainian hands at the time of the disaster. The international team investigating the disaster, JIT, said it will "carefully study" Russia's accusations, but also pointed out that in the past the country has been less than generous when it came to responding to requests for assistance, NOS reports.
Eighty of the 298 trees planted at the National MH17 Monument in Vijfhuizen Park next to Schiphol Airport, have died. One tree was planted for each victim who died in the disaster with the Malaysia Airlines flight.
Russian trolls are trying to influence Dutch discussions on social media with fake accounts, De Groene Amsterdammer reports based on its own research. These trolls show support for anti-Islam party PVV and spread pro-Russian information when it comes to the MH17 disaster, according to the weekly newspaper.
The United States State Department prepared a critical statement on Russia's involvement in the MH17 disaster, but never released it.
An Australian father of three children who were killed in the MH17 disaster condemned Unites States president Donald Trump for refusing to hold Russia and president Vladimir Putin to account for the tragedy. On Facebook Anthony Maslin pointed out some "irrefutable facts" about the disaster to Trump on Tuesday - the 4th anniversary of the Malaysia Airlines plane being shot down.
Relatives will commemorate their loved ones who were killed in the MH17 disaster at the National MH17 Monument in Vijfhuizen on Tuesday. Today is the fourth anniversary of the disaster that claimed 298 lives, including 196 Dutch.
The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the G7 countries called on Russia to provide clarification on the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. According to the G7, evidence from international investigations that MH17 was shot down by a Russian army BUK missile is "convincing, significant and deeply troubling", RTL Nieuws reports.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte met with United States president Donald Trump in Washington on Monday. During his welcome speech Trump spoke about the U.S. and the European Union meeting soon to discuss trade agreements. "If we do work it out that will be positive. And if we don't work it out, that will be positive also", Trump said. Rutte could not agree with that. "No", he interrupted. "That's not positive. We have to work something out."
Dutch police officers, soldiers, prosecutors and diplomats were spied on by Ukrainian and Russian secret services while they were in Ukraine after the MH17 disaster in 2014, RTL Nieuws reports based on well-informed sources.
In an interview with Austrian broadcaster ORF, Russian president Vladimir Putin again denied that Russia was involved in the downing of flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine in July 2014. He called the disaster an "enormous tragedy", but added that the Joint Investigation Team's investigation into the perpetrators is "biased", NOS reports.
Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs does not rule out that in the future the Netherlands will also hold Ukraine accountable for its role in the MH17 disaster. "There is no concrete legal ground for this, but the cabinet does not rule anything out", he said in a parliamentary debate on the government's decision to hold Russia accountable for its role in the downing of the Malaysia Airlines flight, NU.nl reports.
"When it comes to establishing the truth and accountability for what happened to MH17, no single state has the right to remain silent", Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said to the UN Security Council on Tuesday, NOS reports.
On Monday Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs will explain the Netherlands and Australia's decision to formally hold Russia accountable for its role in the downing of flight MH17 to a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels. He is counting on unanimous support from the European Union on this decision, sources told newspaper AD.
"The disaster with MH17 is a black page in our history", Prime Minister Mark Rutte said after the Council of Ministers on Friday. He cut a trade mission to India short to discuss the interim results of the investigation into the disaster with the Council of Ministers. "We won't exclude any legal steps", the Dutch Prime Minster said, NU.nl reports.
The BUK missile system used to shoot down flight MH17 over Eastern Ukraine in July 2014 belonged to the 53rd brigade of the Russian Armed Forces, the Joint Investigation Team revealed on Thursday. Russia denies this, NU.nl reports.
According to Russia, no Russian missile installation ever crossed the border between Russia and Ukraine. The Russian Ministry of Defense says it had nothing to do with the downing of flight MH17.
The Netherlands and Australia hold Russia accountable for "its share in the downing of flight MH17". Both countries informed Russia about this step, the Dutch government announced in a statement on Friday.
The missile that shot down flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine in July 2014 came from the Russian Armed Forces, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) revealed at a press conference on Thursday morning. The question of who shot down the Malaysia Airlines flight was not answered on Thursday.
The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) that is investigating the culprits behind the MH17 disaster, will give an update on the current state of the investigation during a special press conference at 11:00 a.m. on May 24th, RTL Nieuws reports.
During the press conference, the JIT will also call on the public's help to answer a number of questions. The investigators emphasize that no announcements will be made about possible suspects.
There is no new Cold War between the West and Russia on the way, but finding "common ground" remains a challenge, Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said in a press conference after meeting his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow on Friday. The Russians reaffirmed their cooperation in prosecuting those responsible for the MH17 disaster, he added, ANP reports.
Blok emphasized that, especially in difficult times like these, it is important that Europe and Russia stay in conversation with each other.
The prosecution of those responsible for the MH17 disaster is the first subject Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs will discuss with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov during his visit to Moscow on Friday. The Dutch Minister will also ask Russia to contribute to stopping the conflict in Syria, first of all by making a cease fire possible so that humanitarian aid can get to the people in the war-torn country, NOS reports.
The Netherlands is deporting two Russian diplomats to show solidarity with the United Kingdom following a poison gas attack on ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in England. Relatives of people who died in the MH17 disaster are upset that the Dutch government is doing so now, but did not send Russian diplomats away after the Malaysia airlines flight was shot down.
Vladyslav Voloshyn, an Ukrainian military pilot blamed by Russia for shooting down flight MH17, has died. He was killed by gunshots, Ukrainian media report, quoting the local police.
According to Ukrainian media outlet NikVesti, the 29-year-old pilot committed suicide in his apartment in Mykolaiv while his family was at home. They heard a gunshot and called the emergency services. Voloshyn was rushed to hospital, but died of his injuries. Rumors of assassination since the report was published alternately accuse both Russia and Ukraine of pulling the trigger.
Vliegramp MH17, the foundation that represents the relatives of people who died in the MH17 disaster, is furious at PVV leader Geert Wilders for wearing a Russian-Dutch friendship pin on his suit during a visit to Duma in Russia on Tuesday. The next of kin want an apology from Wilders, the foundation said in a tweet.
Wilders tweeted a picture of the pin. "I proudly wear it here. A Russian-Dutch friendship pin", the PVV leader said.
National Geographic show Air Crash Investigation will broadcast a documentary on the flight MH17 disaster on March 4th.
For the documentary, the makers of the show spoke with relatives of victims, and employees of the Dutch Safety Board, which handled part of the investigation into the crash, according to broadcaster NOS. The episode will show reconstructions of the flight and the investigation. The question of who is responsible for downing the Malaysia Airlines flight, will not be discussed.