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Britain Endorses Creating UN Tribunal In MH17 Crash

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond on July 16 endorsed calls for a United Nations tribunal to prosecute those responsible for the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine one year ago.

"Justice must be delivered for the 298 innocent people who lost their lives," said Hammond, whose country is one of the permanent members of the UN Security Council considering the measure.

"That requires an international tribunal, backed by a resolution binding all UN member states, to prosecute those responsible. Any attempt to undermine this process would deprive the victims of justice and cannot be tolerated," he said.

The Netherlands, Malaysia, Australia, Belgium, and Ukraine have offered a draft resolution to the security council setting up an international court.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose country wields veto power in the council, called the measure "premature" and "counterproductive" July 16, insisting that investigations of the crash should be completed first.

Investigators, led by the Dutch, believe evidence points to a Russian missile fired by separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine as the likely culprits. Russia and the rebels deny any responsibility.

Hammond said "frequent obstruction and delays" have been hampering the investigation.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP

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