Australian families suing Malaysia Airlines over MH17 to receive settlement soon

An Australian daily says many families of the 38 Australian citizens and residents who died have taken preliminary compensation from the airline, believed to be US$50,000 (RM208,000). (Reuters pic)

PETALING JAYA: Australian families who filed a class action suit against Malaysia Airlines for the loss of their loved ones on board MH17 are said to be on the cusp of settlement, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

According to the Australian daily, both parties are understood to have reached an agreement.

All it needs is final approval by the Federal Court there.

“It is considered likely that a settlement could take place within a week or so – ahead of the fifth anniversary of the shooting down of the aircraft by a Russian missile over Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board,” the daily reported.

Many families of the 38 Australian citizens and residents who died, it said, have taken preliminary compensation from the airline, believed to be US$50,000 (RM208,000).

News of the settlement comes a day after the team investigating the downing of the flight named four suspects responsible for it.

Investigators named Igor Girkin, a former colonel of the Russian Federal Security Service; Sergey Dubinsky and Oleg Pulatov from the Russian Military Intelligence Service; and Leonid Kharchenko, a Ukrainian former commander.

Flight MH17, which departed from Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam, on its way to Kuala Lumpur, was shot down in Ukraine, 40km from the Russian border on July 17, 2014.