Remains of MH17 victims may never be fully recovered: Dutch FM
The last remains of the victims from downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 might never be fully recovered, the Dutch foreign minister said Saturday, as five more coffins were flown out of Ukraine.
"We cannot say at this moment in any certain way.
at what moment and even if we can recover the last nine (victims), but we will do everything we can in cooperation with authorities here to make that happen and that work is still possible to do," Foreign Minister Bert Koenders told journalists after a ceremony at Kharkiv airport.
Koenders insisted investigators still hoped to recover the wreckage of the downed jet but could not say when that would be as the security situation remains volatile.
The Boeing passenger plane was blown out of the sky on July 17 over rebel-held territory in east Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.
So far 289 victims had been identified among body parts recovered from the site by a team led by investigators from The Netherlands, which lost 193 people in the tragedy.
Ukraine and the West say the Boeing 777 was shot down by separatist fighters using a BUK surface-to-air missile supplied by Russia, but Moscow strongly denies the charges, pointing the finger at Kiev.
Experts from The Netherlands have made four trips to the crash site since a fragile ceasefire deal was signed in early September between rebels and government forces, Ukrainian officials said.
The visits come after international investigators were forced to halt an initial probe at the site in August due to heavy fighting.
© 2014 AFP