00:16 GMT02 December 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Ukraine has handed over the criminal records of three Russians and one Ukrainian, who are suspected of being involved in the downing of Flight MH17 in 2014, to the Netherlands, Ukraine's Security Service (SBU) said Wednesday.

    "On June 18, 2019, three Russian citizens ... and one Ukrainian citizen ... were informed that they were suspected of [downing the plane]. On July 22, 2019, the criminal records pertaining to the suspects were passed to the Kingdom of the Netherlands", the SBU said in a statement.

    The agency added that the criminal records would be redirected to a Dutch court and used in criminal proceedings, tentatively scheduled to begin in March 2020.

    The Malaysian Airlines Boeing crashed on July 17, 2014, in eastern Ukraine while en route to Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam. All 298 people on board were killed. Kiev and the self-proclaimed republics in Ukraine’s easternmost Donbas region, where the plane was shot down, have exchanged blame for the downing.

    Following the incident, a Dutch-led investigative team (JIT) put together to probe the tragedy claimed that the plane was shot down by a Buk missile system which was transported from Russia and returned back after the tragedy. Russia was not invited to participate in the probe.

    Moscow has repeatedly denied the JIT's accusations and said that these claims were unfounded and the investigation itself biased. Russia subsequently conducted its own investigation into the disaster. The manufacturer of the system, Russia's Almaz Antey company, dismissed the allegations, insisting that the rocket was fired from an area controlled by the Ukrainian military, providing evidence that the system belonged to the Ukrainian Army.  Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that Russia has not been granted access to the investigation and that Moscow would be able to recognise its results only if given access to it.

    In early August, Joseph Resch, an independent German detective who is leading his own investigation into the plane crash, said that the JIT had rejected his findings on multiple occasions due to him wanting to make them public. He has since invited any other country interested in helping him publish his findings to come forward.


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    Malaysia Airlines, Investigation, MH17 Crash, MH17
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