The Kremlin has no information on any negotiations with the Netherlands on the crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in Ukraine in July 2014, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists.
“No,” he said, answering the question on whether the Kremlin knows anything about such negotiations. Peskov redirected the request for comment on the corresponding statement made by the Netherlands to the Russian Foreign Ministry.
RTL channel reported on Thursday, quoting the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, that this state expects to start negotiations with Russia on responsibility for involvement in the MH17 crash as soon as possible. “Everything is going in the right direction, and there is hope that official negotiations will start in the near future,” the ministry’s representatives said. “We have a growing confidence that we will soon sit down to a table with representatives for the Russian side.” The negotiations themselves may be held in Vienna, the TV channel reported.
The issue here concerns the so-called state responsibility which is not linked in any way to the criminal investigation carried out by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT), which includes representatives for Australia, Belgium, Malaysia, the Netherlands and Ukraine.
In May 2018, the Joint Investigative Team published interim results of the investigation which said that the air defense system which launched the missile that downed the Boeing could have been taken from Russia and could have been assigned to the 53rd air defense missile brigade near Kursk. Russia refuted the JIT’s accusations. In particular, the Russian Defense Ministry stated that none of the air defense systems of the Armed Forces ever crossed the Russian-Ukrainian border. In addition, representatives for the Russian Defense Ministry reported that they managed to identify the missile that hit Malaysia’s Boeing and found that it had been sent to the army on Ukrainian territory back in 1986 and did not return to Russia since then.
The passenger Boeing-777, operated by Malaysia Airlines, crashed en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur on July 17, 2014, in the east of the Donetsk Region, killing 298 people – citizens of 10 states. Despite active warfare on land, Kiev did not close the airspace above Donetsk for international passenger flights.