The suspects removed an anti-aircraft battery from the Russian border

The suspects removed an anti-aircraft battery from the Russian border

The wreckage of the MH17 plane, which was shot down in eastern Ukraine on November 11, 2014. – Menachem Kahane / AFP

According to intercepted phone calls, suspect men to shoot
Flight MH17 Organized delivery of anti-aircraft battery from the eastern Russian border
Ukraine Dutch judges heard the recordings on Wednesday during the trial, said Dutch judges, on the day of the tragedy, July 17, 2014.

A Boeing 777, which sailed from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, was shot down over the area of ​​armed conflict with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.

“Long Range Artillery”

Russians Sergei Dubinsky, Igor Girkin, Oleg Bulatov and Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko – four high-ranking pro-Russian separatists from eastern Ukraine – are accused of participating in the launch of the missile that brought down the plane. They were tried in absentia. In an intercepted telephone exchange, broadcast at the Schiphol court on Wednesday, suspect Oleg Bulatov told Sergei Dubinsky – nicknamed “Colonel” in the investigation – that he needed “long-range artillery” in the east. Ukraine, after suffering heavy losses in the air attack.

During a call on the morning of the drama, which was also broadcast in court, Dubinsky announced to Bulatov that “BUK will be brought to him” by Leonid Kharchenko and that he should be “placed near Pervomaisky” (in eastern Ukraine). According to the investigation, the suspect refers to an anti-aircraft battery “BUK-TELAR” which on the night of July 16 to 17 “crossed the Russian border and was transferred to Donetsk,” a judge said.

The “main” scenario of the survey

The court – which has yet to issue its ruling – also considered on Wednesday the elements of the investigation that a convoy consisting of a semi-trailer carrying the BUK anti-aircraft battery then headed near Pervomaisky. The international team of investigators led by the Netherlands confirmed in 2018 that the plane was shot down by a Buk missile from the Russian 53rd anti-aircraft brigade stationed in Kursk (southwest).

Dutch judges on Tuesday examined the elements under which the MH17 was shot down by a BUK missile in eastern Ukraine – constituting the “main” scenario of the investigation. Opening this crucial stage of the proceedings, which runs through Thursday, Judge Hendrik Stenhuis said the trial of four suspects should provide “clarity” to the victims’ relatives.

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