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MH17 crash investigation continues in Netherlands

IANS 12 Aug 2014, 13:47:22 PM IST
The Hague: The investigation into the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine, led by the Dutch Safety Board, continues in The Hague.

The team has relocated to The Hague to continue its work.

In recent weeks, an international team of around 25 aircraft accident investigators collected as much information as possible in Ukraine.

The team's efforts will initially focus on the report of preliminary findings which the board aims to publish in a few weeks' time.

The report will contain the first factual findings arising from the investigation based on various sources such as the cockpit voice recorder and the flight data recorder, air traffic control data, radar and satellite images.

This data is currently being compared and will subsequently be analysed.

Due to the changed safety situation at the crash site it is not clear whether the data can be supplemented with further investigation at the site.

To date, under Ukrainian supervision, only a few investigators were able to briefly visit the crash site immediately after the mishap.

Since the Dutch Safety Board took charge of the investigation no new opportunity has arisen for the team to visit the crash site.

The investigators who were on stand-by in Kharkov and Soledar to travel to the disaster area returned to the Netherlands last week in view of the deteriorating safety situation in eastern Ukraine and the Dutch government's decision to leave the crash site for the time being.

The board is also investigating why the complete passenger list for MH17 was not available immediately.

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 on July 17, killing all 298 passengers and crew on board.

This is the second major tragedy for Malaysia Airlines this year after flight MH370 with 239 passengers and crew on board went missing while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8.

The flight remains untraced till date despite intense international search efforts.