Tuesday

27th Jun 2017

EU calls for 'international investigation' into Ukraine air crash

  • Several airlines have suspended flights to the region in response (Photo: Andy Mitchell)

An airliner carrying 295 people has crashed in a conflict zone in east Ukraine, with all on board presumed dead.

The Malaysian Airlines flight, from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, disappeared from radar screens at approximately 16.20 Kiev time according to Ukrainian authorities.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Early reports indicate it was carrying Dutch, French, and US citizens among other nationals, with several airlines suspending flights to the region in response.

The Russian, Ukrainian, and US leaders, as well as the EU foreign service, quickly put out statements of condolences.

The EU service also called for an “international investigation”, adding: “We call on all parties in the region of the crash to provide full access to the crash site, so that it can be secured immediately, to co-operate fully and to share all relevant information.”

The crash occurred in an area where Ukrainian forces are fighting with pro-Russia rebels.

The Ukrainian foreign ministry said in a statement it has “evidence” that the plane was “shot down by a Russian Buk missile system”.

But one rebel leader, Andrei Purgin, told the New York Times by phone “We don’t have the technical ability to hit a plane at that height”.

The Reuters news agency reports that European and US stock markets fell on fears the disaster will enflame geopolitical tensions.

The US and EU one day earlier imposed financial sanctions on Russia after accusing it of sending heavy weapons into east Ukraine.

The US also imposed a ban on trade with eight Russian arms firms, including Almaz-Antey, which makes Buk missile systems.

Speaking to European press in Brussels on Thursday before news of the air disaster, the US State Department’s top diplomat on the Ukraine crisis, Victoria Nuland, had said: “These companies make or sell the kind of weapons or materiel that we are seeing in east Ukraine”.

The EU foreign service added in its communique: “This is another stark illustration of why it is so urgent to bring this conflict to an end”.

“Without prejudging the facts behind the crash, we call on all parties to stop the senseless loss of life in eastern Ukraine, to refrain from any escalatory acts, and to agree to an immediate ceasefire."

EU extends sanctions on Russia

German chancellor Angela Merkel said that Russia hadn't done enough to implement the so-called Minsk peace process, a condition for lifting the sanctions.

EU extends sanctions on Russia

German chancellor Angela Merkel said that Russia hadn't done enough to implement the so-called Minsk peace process, a condition for lifting the sanctions.

Interview

EU visa waiver unlikely to import Ukraine crime

Visa-free travel, which began last week, unlikely to prompt a Ukrainian crime wave, an EU police expert has said, but Ukraine itself is seeing increases in lawlessness.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Free AllianceEFA Is Looking for a New Intern
  2. Malta EU 2017Conservation of Atlantic Tunas: International Measures Become EU Law
  3. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceCan Statin Therapy Interfere With a Physically Active Lifestyle?
  4. EPSUOn Public Services Day, Stop Austerity! Workers Need a Pay Rise!
  5. EGBAOnline Gambling: The EU Court Rejects Closed Licensing Regimes In Member States
  6. World VisionFaces of Today, Leaders of Tomorrow: Join the Debate on Violence Against Girls - 29 June
  7. ECR GroupThe EU Must Better Protect Industry from Unfair Competition
  8. Malta EU 2017Better Protection for Workers From Cancer-Causing Substances
  9. EPSUAfter 9 Years of Austerity Europe's Public Sector Workers Deserve a Pay Rise!
  10. Dialogue PlatformGlobalised Religions and the Dialogue Imperative. Join the Debate!
  11. UNICEFEU Trust Fund Contribution to UNICEF's Syria Crisis Response Reaches Nearly €200 Million
  12. EUSEW17Bringing Buildings Into the Circular Economy. Discuss at EU Sustainable Energy Week