The relatives of the victims killed in the MH17 disaster were shocked by statements made by FvD leader Thierry Baudet in his debate with VVD leader Mark Rutte on Wednesday. Baudet questioned the independence of the Joint Investigation Team's investigation into the downing of the plane. He also said that Ukraine may be behind the attack.
In the two days after flight MH17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine, a Russian troll factory posted over 65 thousand tweets blaming Ukraine for the disaster, De Groene Amsterdammer reports after analyzing 9 million tweets posted by a St Petersburg based troll factory called the Internet Research Agency.
According to the magazine, an organized campaign was launched after MH17 was shot down. The Internet Research Agency played a role in this, as did pro-Russia media who circulated theories that 'proved' Russia innocent in the disaster.
Earlier this month the Netherlands and Australia had a first meeting with Russia about the country's liability in the MH17 disaster, Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs and his Australian counterpart Marise Payne revealed in a press conference in Australia. Both Ministers stressed that they are doing everything in their power to get justice to the victims of the disaster, NOS reports.
Airlines worldwide are more aware of the risks associated with flying over conflict areas since the disaster with flight MH17 in Ukraine in 2014, the Dutch Safety Board concluded in an additional investigation into flying over conflict areas. Countries or states dealing with armed conflict on their territory, however, hardly changed anything in their airspace management, the Safety Board said in a report published on Thursday, ANP reports.
The Netherlands and Australia will start talks with Russia about the country's liability in the downing of flight MH17 in the coming weeks, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed to NU.nl after reports in RTL Nieuws.
"We are in contact with Russia through diplomatic channels about state accountability. We are increasingly confident that we will soon be meeting with the Russians", the spokesperson said. The Ministry would not say anything about the date and location of the consultation.
Relatives of those who died when flight MH17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine in 2014 can receive free legal assistance if they want to join the criminal proceedings as an aggrieved party, Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security said in a letter to parliament on Monday, ANP reports.
Working group Truth-finding MH17 wrote a letter to United States president Donald Trump asking him to intervene on their behalf with Russian president Vladimir Putin. The working group, which consists of relatives of people who died when flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine in 2014, wants Trump to convince Putin to cooperate in the investigation and be open about what happened, according to the letter published by RTL Nieuws.
Twitter accounts run by Russian trolls from St. Petersburg tweeted about the MH17 disaster 1,400 times, according to an analysis by NOS of a database of tweets released by Twitter on Wednesday. The database consists of 9 million tweets from Russian trolls and another 1 million tweets by Iranian trolls, including retweets. The tweets were posted by 3,814 accounts that Twitter linked to the Internet Research Agency based in St. Petersburg. Another 770 accounts are based in Iran.
Russia for the first time said it is willing to talk to the Netherlands and Australia about the flight MH17 disaster in a statement the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs made to RTL Nieuws.
Prime Minster Mark Rutte called for more international cooperation in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly in New York on Wednesday, local time. The Dutch Prime Minister's speech stood in stark contrast to what American president Donald Trump had to say the day before, ANP reports.
Trump criticized multilateral cooperation between countries and organizations. He renounced virtually everything that even resembles international cooperation.
The Netherlands and Australia want to start negotiating with Russia "in the foreseeable future" about the country's accountability in the downing of flight MH17, Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said after meeting with his Australian colleague Marise Payne in New York, NOS reports.
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. The statement was set to be released on Monday - ahead of the four year anniversary of the disaster - but was withdrawn at the last minute because Secretary of State Mike Pompeo "did not approve" of the language used, a source told Foreign Policy.
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.