Netherlands: Dutch prosecutor dismisses Ukrainian radar data in MH17 downingJune 19, 2019 at 15:19 (GMT) · Published
A Joint Investigation Team (JIT) in Nieuwegein has decided to partially dismiss radar data from Ukrainian stations at the time of downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine in July 2014 due to their "problems" at the time of the incident. Chief Prosecutor from Dutch National Prosecutor's Office Fred Westerbeke made the remarks in an interview in Nieuwegein on Wednesday.
"We do have some radar data but there were some problems with radar stations there… so these radar data are not relevant anymore,” said Westerbeke after prosecutors charged three Russians and a Ukrainian national with murder for their alleged role in Mh17 downing.
Westerbeke urged Russia to provide more comprehensive information on how the "Buk-telar from the 53rd Antiaircraft Missile Brigade from the Russian Federation" was employed in the downing of the aircraft on July 17.
"Everybody in the 53rd knows how it was and nobody is telling us anything and this is a shame and the Russian Federation should tell us what happened."
In a written statement, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation (MFA) dismissed JIT’s statement on alleged involvement of Russian servicemen in MH17 crash and said the investigation was based on ungrounded accusations and not facts. Moscow also voiced concern over JIT’s one-sided bias, fed solely by what it claimed was forged evidence by Ukraine. Russia pledged its own resources in truth-finding in the MH17 downing.
The three Russian military officers accused with involvement were named as Oleg Pulatov, Igor Girkin, and Sergey Dubinskiy, with the Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko also being named, and international arrest warrants have been issued for all four men.
Girkin was serving as Minister of Defence of the Donetsk People's Republic at the time with the other three men all working under him.
The Defence Ministry of the Donetsk People's Republic has denied the allegations that it was involved in the MH17 crash.
A prospective trial date of March 2020 was set by investigators.
Russia does not form part of the (JIT), which is made up of police and criminal justice authorities from the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine.