Earlier today, I spoke to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and the Dutch Safety Board – ahead of their long awaited report on the shooting down of flight MH17.
Of the 298 lives lost that tragic day, 43 were our fellow Malaysians.
Many of their relatives are present today in the Netherlands, where they were briefed on the findings of the report.
This was an unforeseeable act and, of the 160 flights that were on MH17’s general route that day, not one was advised by the relevant authorities against any specific threat.
But we now know that the plane was hit by a Russian-made Buk missile fired from rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine.
While this has long been speculated about, the fact that these chain of events have now been proven conclusively by the Dutch Safety Board mean that we must move forward towards ensuring that those responsible are held accountable for this murderous act.
Fifteen months may have passed, but our commitment to bringing the perpetrators to justice remains as strong as it was on that fateful day, 17 July 2014, when hundreds of innocent people lost their lives in a conflict that was not theirs.
The on-going criminal investigation, which is being led by the Dutch with our full support, must provide definitive answers and allow us to pursue the strongest action possible against those responsible.
It has been, and will remain, a difficult journey – particularly for those who lost their loves ones, who are in my thoughts and prayers. But I promise you that Malaysia will remain steadfast until those behind this heinous act are made to pay for their crimes.
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