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Diplomatic crisis: Netherlands, Russia tit-for-tat on “unacceptable” remarks

By Tajuddin
In DIPLOMAT MEMO
Oct 4th, 2016
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Criminal investigators from the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine said they had "irrefutable evidence" that a BUK missile slammed into the plane and was fired from a field in eastern Ukraine then controlled by pro-Russian rebels (AFP Photo/Bulent Kilic)

Criminal investigators from the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine said they had “irrefutable evidence” that a BUK missile slammed into the plane and was fired from a field in eastern Ukraine then controlled by pro-Russian rebels (AFP Photo/Bulent Kilic)

Amsterdam, Netherlands (Xinhua + DIPLOMAT.SO)- When summoned earlier Monday by the Russia foreign ministry, the Dutch ambassador in Moscow called on Russia to cooperate to bring the criminals behind the downing of flight MH17 to justice while Moscow continued questioning on the objectivity of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) report, said the Dutch Foreign Ministry.

Hours ago, Dutch ambassador in Moscow Renee Jones-Bos was summoned by Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexei Mesjkov. Jones-Bos did not elaborate after the 30-minute conversion, saying she would first report to her ministry.

In the conversation, Jones-Bos emphasized that “the Netherlands government attaches the greatest importance to it that the perpetrators are found and brought to justice,” said the Dutch ministry in a statement.

“Russia mainly talked about the alleged lack of good procedure, objectivity and transparency of the JIT investigation. But despite this criticism it seems willing to deliver more information to the JIT. This will also be seen in the coming weeks,” the statement said.

In the statement, the Dutch authorities repeated that “it is unacceptable to question the professionalism and integrity of the Public Prosecution and discredit the JIT.”

For Moscow, the Dutch ambassador was summoned because Russia wanted to explain why it does not accept certain results of the JIT report, said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.

On Wednesday last week, the JIT, consisting of representatives of the Netherlands, Australia, Malaysia, Belgium and Ukraine, said the airplane had been hit by an anti-aircraft Buk missile launched from the territory controlled by pro-independence insurgents and the Buk was brought to Ukraine from Russia and transferred back after the missile launch.

Russia’s Foreign ministry immediately rejected the findings, calling the report “biased and politically motivated.” Russia’s Defense Ministry said it planned to provide Dutch investigators with objective radar observation data, which could help “determine the true causes of the crash.”

On Friday, Dutch Foreign minister Bert Koenders has summoned the Russian ambassador in the Hague to tell him that Kremlin’s remarks on the JIT findings were unacceptable.

The Boeing 777 crashed in eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014 while flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. All 298 people on board died, most of them Dutch citizens.

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