Dutch authorities decide not to declassify MH17 crash documents

The Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security may not declassify the documents concerning the crash of flight MH17 over Ukraine, as reported on the Dutch Council of State’s website.

The statement notes that the Council of State has partially repealed the decision of the lower court, which ruled that the information on the catastrophe must be published. In this way, the council has reserved the state’s right to secrecy.

The beginning of the document notes that this statement is a response to a collective lawsuit by several media outlets – the Volkskrant newspaper and the RTL and NOS TV channels.

In August 2015, Dutch Minister of Security and Justice Ard van der Steur refused to provide reporters with all possible information on the catastrophe. The media then cited the right to free access to information. Van der Steur agreed with the legitimacy of the media’s demands, but also asked them to understand the importance of the situation, noting that disclosure of the material may interfere with the investigation of the plane crash.

A Malaysia Airlines Boeing flying the route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down on 17 July 2014 over the Donbas. All 298 persons on board were killed.

In August 2014, the international Joint Investigative Team (JIT) was created to investigate the causes of the catastrophe. The team has members from Ukraine, the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia and Malaysia. Two years later, in September 2016, the team presented the first conclusions of the investigation. The investigation showed that the plane was shot down by a Buk missile system which had come from Russian territory.

  MH17, The Netherlands, Ukraine