Russia welcomes UN resolution on MH17 investigation

Last Updated: Tue, Jul 22, 2014 16:20 hrs

Moscow, July 22 (IANS) Russia Tuesday welcomed the UN Security Council's (UNSC) resolution calling for an independent investigation into the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash in Ukraine last Thursday.

The resolution highlights that the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) plays a "crucial role" in a "completely independent and unbiased international investigation" and that Russia is ready to assist, the Russian foreign ministry said.

Moscow stressed that all confronting parties in Ukraine should stop fighting in the area and guarantee access to the crash site for the investigators, Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) monitors and other international organisations, Xinhua reported.

In the resolution, adopted at a meeting Monday, the Council members condemned "in the strongest terms" the downing of flight MHI7.

The resolution "demands that the armed groups in control of the crash site and the surrounding area refrain from any actions that may compromise the integrity of the crash site, including by refraining from destroying, moving, or disturbing wreckage, equipment, debris, personal belongings, or remains, and immediately provide safe, secure, full and unrestricted access to the site and surrounding area for the appropriate investigating authorities".

The flight data recorders from the plane were handed over to Malaysia Tuesday by the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic's (DPR) prime minister Alexander Borodai.

"I can see that the black boxes are intact with only minor damage. They are in good condition," a special envoy of the Malaysian government said.

Meanwhile, a refrigerated train carrying the bodies and remains of 282 victims reached Kharkiv Tuesday, from where they would be taken to the Netherlands for identification.

Flight MH17, a Boeing 777, was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it crashed after being hit by a missile in Ukraine near the Russian border last Thursday, killing all 298 passengers and crew on board. Of the 283 passengers on board, 193 were Dutch.

This is the second major tragedy for Malaysia Airlines this year after flight MH370 with 239 passengers and crew on board went missing while going from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing March 8. That flight remains untraced till date despite intense international efforts.

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