The MH17 Trial as Political Theatre and the New Cold War

The MH17 Trial as Political Theatre and the New Cold War

Kees van der Pijl1

20 October 2019

On 9 March, 2020, the trial of those accused of being responsible for the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 on 17 July 2014, will commence. The decision to hold a trial of MH17 suspects was taken by the Dutch Public Prosecution Service (Openbaar Ministerie, OM) on 19 June 2019, on the basis of the criminal investigation by the Joint investigation Committee, JIT. The JIT members conducting this investigation are the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, and Ukraine (since August 2014) and Malaysia (since March 2015). Prime Minister Mahathir of Malaysia has criticised the late admission of his country to the criminal prosecution, and also has raised doubts about the pertinence of the indictment for murder of three Russians and one Ukrainian, an indictment made public at the JIT press conference on 19 June 2019.

1 This piece is part of a project jointly undertaken with Hector Reban and Max van der Werff after the author’s return from attending a conference MH17—The Quest for Justice, in Kuala Lumpur in August 2019.

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