Britain calls for Russia’s full cooperation with MH17 prosecution

MH17 was brought down in 2014 over territory held by pro-Russian separatist forces in eastern Ukraine as it flew from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, killing all 298 people on board. (Reuters pic)

LONDON: Britain said Russia must cooperate fully with the murder prosecution of three Russians and a Ukrainian for downing Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine in July 2014, killing 298 people including 10 Britons.

An investigation team in the Netherlands tasked with assigning criminal responsibility for the plane’s destruction named four suspects on Wednesday.

“The Russian Federation must now cooperate fully with the prosecution and provide any assistance it requests,” British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said on Wednesday.

He added in a statement: “The charges brought against these individuals today show that the international community stands together against the impunity of those responsible for the despicable murder of 298 innocent people.”

In KIEV, Ukraine said it will try to arrest a Ukrainian suspect, Leonid Kharchenko, in relation to the downing of the plane, Interfax Ukraine quoted General Prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko as saying.

Kharchenko and three Russians are facing murder charges in connection to the plane’s destruction in a trial due to start in the Netherlands in March.