THE HAGUE: International investigators and relatives of victims of flight MH17, shot down over eastern Ukraine almost three years ago, renewed efforts Wednesday to push the probe forward, issuing videos appealing for witnesses.
It is hoped the videos of family members talking about the pain of losing their loved ones will spur residents in Ukraine to come forward with new information, Dutch media reported.
“The Joint Investigative Team which is carrying out the criminal investigation into the disaster informed relatives about the videos” this week, Dutch daily tabloid Algemeen Dagblad said.
“The videos will be distributed via a journalistic website in eastern Ukraine,” by late Wednesday, the newspaper said.
The clips contain interviews with two relatives of some of the 298 people who died when the Malaysia Airlines jet was blown from the sky by a Russian-made BUK anti-aircraft missile on July 17, 2014.
The majority of the passengers were Dutch.
“Every single memory hurts. I can’t look back at good memories without feeling pain,” an emotional Silene Frederiksz tells viewers, speaking in Dutch with subtitles.
Her son Bryce, 23 and his girlfriend Daisy, 20 died in the incident.
Frederiksz told current affairs programme EenVandaag how she had been approached to participate.
“You have to grab every possibility to get to the truth. It’s the emotion of a mother speaking about losing her child — I hope it will touch people,” she said.
The international inquiry team concluded in September last year that the missile that shot down the plane came from a battery transported from Russia across the border into Ukraine and taken back after the launch.
Investigators have also released the names of two Russian-speaking men wanted in connection with the incident: Andrey Ivanovich, also known as “Orion” and Nikolay Fiodorovich, who used the pseudonym “Delfin”.
Preliminary criminal findings said around 100 people are under investigation for playing “an active role” in the incident and confirmed the missile was fired from a field which at the time was in territory held by pro-Moscow rebels, who are battling Kiev.
Russia has described the report as “biased”, while Ukraine said it proved Moscow’s direct involvement in the tragedy.
The pro-Russian separatists have denied having fired the missile, denying possessing such a weapon.
— EenVandaag (@EenVandaag) June 28, 2017