MH17 investigators reveal intercepted phone calls from Russian officials
MH17 investigators have released a number of intercepted phone calls between top Russian officials and the separatist hunters who shot the plane in Ukraine five years ago.
Investigators led by the Netherlands say that the calls point to a link between the Russian security service and the rebels in Eastern Ukraine.
Today they revealed that the separatists & # 39; almost daily & # 39; spoke with Russian contacts in the summer of 2014, when the plane was shot from the sky, killing 298 people.
The influence of Russia on the rebels of the Donetsk People's Republic went beyond military support & # 39; and they spoke on FSB secure lines, it is claimed.
In a call, a separatist leader, Alexander Borodai, hears saying: & I execute orders and protect the interests of the only state, the Russian Federation. & # 39;
Investigators believe that the aircraft was shot down by a missile made by Russia and said that based on the calls they received a & # 39; new testimony & # 39; made.
Russia denies involvement and has already rejected today's announcement and claims that the telephone interceptions & # 39; partly false & # 39; and have not been verified.
MH17 investigators have released a number of intercepted phone calls between top Russian officials and the separatist hunters who allegedly shot the plane
The special FSB telephones were used by top Russian officials in their contact with the hunters, said senior investigator David Nelson.
& # 39; Those are special phones, you can't buy them. They arrived via Moscow. FSB & # 39; one hears one of the pro-Russian separatists say.
Another separatist discussed how & # 39; people from Moscow & # 39; took over the order and said men came with a & # 39; mandate from Shoygu & # 39 ;, the Russian defense minister.
Among the Russian contacts of the rebels was Sergey Aksyonov, the head of the Crimea annexed by the Russian annexation and a senior assistant to Vladimir Putin.
In another call, Borodai, the self-proclaimed prime minister of the Donetsk People's Republic, hears financing discussed with one of his Russian contacts.
Detectives say there is evidence that the DPR rebels were funded by & # 39; Russian beneficiaries & # 39 ;.
& # 39; According to a high-ranking DPR member, almost the entire DPR budget was paid by Russian funds & # 39 ;, researchers said in their statement today.
The Dutch-led research team says they want to know more about who gave orders to Borodai & # 39; and others.
& # 39; Ties between Russian officials and DPR leaders seem to have been much closer & # 39; than originally thought, said Andy Kraag, the head of the Criminal Investigations Division of the Dutch police.
& # 39; The JIT wants to know who controlled the rebel leadership in Donetsk and who commanded the deployment of the BUK TELAR (rocket). & # 39;
The reconstructed wreck of MH17 will be presented to the media in 2015 by Dutch researchers
MH17 departed from Schiphol just 24 hours before it was shot down over Ukraine, killing all 298 on board
The Boeing jet was shot from the sky on a trip from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, killing 298 people, mostly Dutchmen.
The researchers led by the Netherlands say the aircraft was shot down by a BUK anti-aircraft missile that came from the 53rd anti-aircraft missile brigade of the Russian army.
They said earlier that the rocket was being transported from the brigade in the Russian city of Kursk to Ukraine.
Russia has denied involvement.
& # 39; Recent analysis of witness statements and other information revealed that Russian influence on the DPR (rebels) went beyond military support & # 39 ;, researchers said.
& # 39; Intercepted phone calls also seem to show the involvement of Russian security services, which work side by side in controlling the DVR.
& # 39; The intensity of Russian influence is relevant for the investigation of further persons involved in the downing of MH17.
& # 39; The Joint Investigation Team is looking for information about the people within the military and administrative hierarchy who have made the shooting of MH17 possible.
& # 39; The JIT wants to get in touch with further witnesses who are able to testify about these command lines and the role that Russian government officials may have played. & # 39;
A pro-Russian separatist is at the crash location of flight MH17 of Malaysia Airlines in 2014
Wilbert Paulissen, head of the national police of the Netherlands, announces murder against three Russians and one Ukrainian in June about the murder of MH17
Another suspected, alleged separatist commander Volodymyr Tsemakh (photo) was released by Ukraine as part of a prisoner exchange with Russia
Investigators announced in June that three Russians and one Ukrainian had been accused of murdering MH17.
The four suspects, all members of the DPR, were named as Russians Sergey Dubinsky, Oleg Pulatov and Igor Girkin and Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko.
However, the trial is likely to be absent, since neither Russia nor Ukraine extradite their nationals.
The Ukrainian authorities said they would try to hold Kharchenko, who is reportedly on their territory.
Another suspect, alleged separatist commander Volodymyr Tsemakh, was released by Ukraine as part of a prisoner exchange with Russia.
Dutch prosecutors want to interrogate Tsemakh and European politicians have insisted that he is not allowed to travel to Russia.
Last year, Vladimir Putin called the decline of MH17 a & # 39; terrible tragedy & # 39; but said that Moscow was not the culprit and that there were other explanations for what happened.
Russia also denies Western allegations that it sent ground forces as well as weapons and funding to the rebels in Eastern Ukraine.
. (TagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) news (t) Ukraine