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    JIT Accusations Against Russia on MH17 Crash Case Ungrounded - Russian Foreign Ministry

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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Russian Foreign Ministry said accusations against Russia by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) in the case of the MH17 flight crash in eastern Ukraine in 2014 were ungrounded.

    “The statements voiced by the JIT during a press conference on 19 June about the alleged involvement of Russian servicemen in the Malaysian Boeing MH17 crash can cause nothing but regret. Once again, absolutely unsubstantiated accusations aimed at discrediting the Russian Federation in the eyes of the international community are being brought against the Russian side," the ministry said in a statement.

    It pointed out that the JIT's statements that Russia allegedly refused to cooperate on the MH17 case were untrue, adding that the JIT had presented no evidence in the case.

    Addressing the video materials the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) relies on in the MH17 crash case, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that examinations conducted by Russian experts proved that they were falsified. 

    “Relevant Russian agencies carried out a tremendous amount of unprecedented work: from declassifying data on Russian military equipment and conducting a complex experiment by the Almaz-Antey concern to handing over primary radar data and documentation proving the Ukrainian identity of the missile that shot down the Malaysian Boeing, as well as high-precision examinations proving that the video materials the JIT relies on in its conclusions were falsified," it said.

    This comes after investigators probing the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 have named 4 suspects, including three Russians and one Ukrainian. 

    The Boeing 777, en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, was downed near the city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on 17 July 2014. All 298 people aboard - primarily citizens of Malaysia and the Netherlands - were killed. Kiev accused the self-proclaimed rebels fighting in Donbass for the tragedy, who, for their part, responded by pointing out that they had no military equipment that could allow them to down a plane at that altitude.

    As a result of the tragedy, a Joint Investigative Team was established by the Netherlands to conduct an inquiry into the case. Russia, however, was excluded from the investigation process.

    The JIT displayed what they claimed was the engine from a missile that had purportedly downed the MH17 flight, claiming that it came from Russia's arsenal. The Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation shrugged off the accusations, stating that all such missiles had been retired in 2011.

    Russia's Foreign Ministry described accusations of alleged involvement in the tragedy "openly biased" and "one-sided", adding that Moscow had previously provided the JIT with evidence proving that a Buk missile wielded by Ukraine had struck and destroyed the aircraft.

    Moscow expressed frustration that its testimony and evidence were ignored by investigators.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin, while commenting on the exclusion of Russia from the probe of the MH17 downing, said that Moscow would only be able to officially recognise the results if it was a full-fledged participant in the probe.

    Related:

    MH17 Downing Investigators Name 4 Suspects, DPR Refutes Claims of Involvement
    MH17 Investigators Ignored Russian Data on Missile That Hit Boeing - Official
    Main Reason for MH17 Crash is Ukraine's Failure to Close Its Airspace - Source
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