"I expect that by the end of the year, maybe early next year, the list of those that we believe should be held accountable will be confirmed and then there must be a prosecution," Bishop told Australian state broadcaster ABC in an interview.
Flight MH17 crashed on July 17, 2014, in eastern Ukraine while flying en route to Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam. All 298 passengers and crew aboard the aircraft died in the incident.
The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) tasked with probing the crash announced on Wednesday that the MH17 airliner was allegedly downed by a Buk missile system which was brought from Russia and consequently returned there. Furthermore the investigation believes that the missile was launched by the territory controlled by the Donbas militias.
The Russian Defense Ministry cast doubt on the conclusions of the investigators, saying that no Russian missile systems, including Buk, have ever crossed the Russian-Ukrainian border.