JULIE BISHOP: We still don't know who is responsible for the downing of MH17

Photo: Lisa Maree Williams/ Getty.

Today the Dutch Safety Board has confirmed that Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was hit by a Buk surface-to-air missile while flying over Ukraine.

According to their final report on the investigation of the plane’s downing on July 17, 2014 a Buk missile fired from rebel-held eastern Ukraine hit the left upper side of the cockpit.

“No scenario other than a Buk surface-to-air missile can explain this combination of facts,” the report said.

Along with the report, the safety board has released a chilling animation of the event. See it here.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, along with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, welcomed the release of the Dutch Safety Board’s final aircraft accident investigation report, saying that it was “consistent with the Australian Government’s initial assessment of the incident”.

However, what the report didn’t reveal was who is to be held responsible for the downing.

“The report does not attribute responsibility for the downing of the plane,” she said, explaining that a criminal investigation by authorities of the Joint Investigation Team, which includes the Australian Federal Police, will determine who is at fault.

“We, and other partner governments of the Joint Investigation Team, remain absolutely committed to seeing justice done, following Russia’s disappointing veto of the widely supported proposal for a UN Security Council mandated international tribunal,” she said.

In July, Russia vetoed a United Nations Security Council draft resolution, proposed by Malaysia and backed by Australia, which would have worked to prosecute those responsible for the downing of flight MH17.

Despite gaining 11 “yes” votes from the 15-member council, three countries abstained: China, Angola and Venezuela, and Russia vetoed the motion.

At the time, Bishop said the veto “compounds the atrocity” of the situation.

“In a world with an increasing number of violent terrorist groups and other non-state actors, many with sophisticated military capabilities, it is inconceivable that the Security Council would now walk away from holding to account those who brought down a commercial aeroplane,” she said.

The criminal investigation by the Joint Investigation Team is not expected to be completed this year.

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