On Thursday, according to media reports, the Dutch-led international investigation team announced that it was Russian military personnel who had deployed the Buk surface-to-air missile, that shot down the plane. Russia has denied any involvement in the plane’s destruction.
Speaking to journalists on Friday at UN Headquarters in New York, UN Deputy Spokesperson Farhan Haq said that Secretary-General António Guterres underlined a prior Security Council resolution demanding that “all states cooperate fully with efforts to establish accountability”.
“In such instances, establishing the truth about this event is an important part of achieving justice for the victims and their families,” Mr. Haq added.
All 298 people on board MH17, which was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, died when it crashed on 17 July 2014, in Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine.
It claimed the lives of 193 Dutch nationals, 43 from Malaysia, and 27 from Australia. Other victims came from a variety of countries including Indonesia, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany and the Philippines.
One year after the incident, Malaysia introduced a draft resolution in the UN Security Council on a measure that would have established an international tribunal to prosecute persons responsible for the downing of MH17.
The 15-member body, however, failed to adopt the resolution following a Russian veto.
If one of the Council’s five permanent members casts a negative vote on a resolution, the text cannot be adopted.
On the first anniversary of that tragedy, Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General at that time, issued a statement in which he said “the victims must be honoured by a collective effort to ascertain the truth about the incident and ensure that any persons determined responsible will be held to account.”