Malaysia not invited to join criminal investigation of MH17

Kuala Lumpur (ANTARA News) - Malaysia had not been invited to officially join the Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team (JIT), which is undertaking the criminal probe, it is reported here Tuesday.

Malaysian Ambassador to the Netherlands Dr Fauziah Mohd Taib told local media that Malaysia has not been invited yet to be involved in the criminal investigation into the downing of Flight MH17, although Dutch-led workers have already started combing the crash site in Ukraine, it is reported here Tuesday.

Malaysia is currently only part of the MH17 technical investigation team, he said.

During his visit to Malaysia on November 5, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte had said that it was only logical for Malaysia to be given a more prominent role in the probe.

This was due to the high number of Malaysians who died and because MH17 was a Malaysian registered aircraft.

Fauziah said the issue was one that the Dutch would also need to discuss with the governments of Ukraine and Australia.

She said Malaysia was not invited to join the debris recovery work being carried out at the site either, possibly because it is still not safe to be there.

Malaysian Ambassador to Ukraine Chuah Teong Ban believed that Malaysia would not be allowed to inspect the debris unless it became part of the criminal investigation team.

Malaysia's Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said recently that Malaysia had expressed its stand very clearly that it must be part of the criminal investigation team and had informed Dutch authorities of its intention. 

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