Relatives of victims of the passenger Boeing 777 MH17 airliner downed over Donbas in July 2014 have protested near the Russian embassy in the Netherlands and condemned the position of Moscow, which continues to deny involvement in the tragedy, the Kyiv-based ZN.UA (Mirror Weekly) ezine has said, citing the Dutch ezine NOS.nl.
“In front of the Russian embassy in The Hague relatives of the victims symbolically set 298 white chairs symbolizing the 298 MH17 passengers who were killed. The seats were arranged like they were in the plane, and included aisles,” said the report. Relatives and friends of the victims also hung placards, reading “Justice for MH17” and “Humanity over politics.”
The protesters want Russia to answer for the crime it committed.
“We want to call Russia to accountability. It’s abundantly clear that Russians played a certain role in the MH17 catastrophe… Russia’s silence is politically motivated. If you are silent and do not take responsibility then you cannot call yourself a great nation,” Sander van Luik, a representative of the working group investigating the tragedy, said.
On July 17, 2014, the Boeing 777 belonging to Malaysia Airlines on the MH17 flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur disappeared from the radar screens over Shakhtarsk in Donetsk region. All passengers and crew aboard the plane died, including 80 children.
After almost four years, in May 2018, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) at a press conference at The Hague demonstrated fragments of the rocket, which downed the plane. The missile was launched from the BUK system belonging to the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile based in the Russian city of Kursk.
The next day, Australia and the Netherlands officially announced that it was Russia that was responsible for shooting down the Malaysian plane. The European Council also called on the Russia to take responsibility and fully promote all attempts to establish the truth, justice and guilt of specific individuals involved in the crime.
Russia still denies any involvement in the tragedy – almost five years after the downing of the airliner.