MH17 disaster foundation opposes Russia’s reinstatement in PACE

The Dutch MH17 Disaster Foundation, Stichting Vliegramp, founded to assist the families of those killed in the Malaysia Airlines flight that was shot down over eastern Ukraine in 2014, has demanded the deferment of Russia’s reinstatement in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), the Telegraaf reports, citing a letter from the organization to the PACE.

The foundation is concerned that Russia did not collaborate with the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) that investigated the causes of the crash, and instead always cast doubt on the team’s conclusions, demonstrating “too little responsibility” and “spreading misinformation”.

The authors of the letter urge the Council of Europe to set preconditions for Russia’s return to the parliamentary assembly, for example, the obligation to collaborate with the investigation and assist in bringing all the guilty parties to justice.

On 19 June, the Netherlands Public Prosecution Service disclosed the names of the first four suspects in the MH17 murder case. Three of them are Russians: Igor “Strelkov” Girkin, former defense minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR); Sergey Dubinsky, former head of the DPR’s intelligence branch, and his deputy Oleg Pulatov. In addition, charges will be brought against the Ukrainian citizen Leonid Kharchenko.

On 24 June, Russia applied for the reinstatement of its delegation’s rights in the PACE. Russia’s rights in the organization have been withheld since 2014 due to developments in Crimea and the Donbas.

  Russia, MH17, Netherlands, PACE, Council of Europe