Koenders summons Russian ambassador

Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Bert Koenders summoned the Russian ambassador on Friday, following comments by Russian Federation officials regarding the criminal investigation into the downing of flight MH17.

Responding to the presentation of the initial findings of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT), spokespersons for the Kremlin and the Russian foreign ministry and defence ministry questioned the professionalism, integrity and independence of the Dutch Public Prosecution Service. The Russian ambassador was informed that unsubstantiated criticism like this is unacceptable.

‘Given the convincing nature of the evidence, Russia should respect the results that have been presented, rather than impugning the investigation and sowing doubt,’ Mr Koenders said. The Dutch foreign minister also called on Russia to continue to cooperate fully with the investigation and subsequent prosecution and trial, in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 2166. Earlier this week the international community welcomed the first results of the criminal investigation, as well as the professional and independent approach taken by the JIT.

Mr Koenders’ meeting with the Russian ambassador took place at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague.