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MH17: Australia accuses Putin of ‘protecting murderers’

Australia’s foreign minister has urged Russia to hand over the three men, including two Russians, convicted in the Netherlands on Thursday for the downing of a Malaysia Airlines plane over Ukraine in 2014. Penny Wong said also arrested Russian President Vladimir Putin, accusing him of “protecting murderers”.

Russians Igor Girkin and Sergei Dubinsky, as well as Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko were convicted of murder and of having played a part in the destruction of the device, killing 298 people, after a trial which lasted two and a half years. They were sentenced Thursday in absentia to life imprisonment.

According to the Australian minister, the verdict confirms that “the Russian Federation has a responsibility”. “We call on Russia to hand over these convicts to serve the court sentence for their hate crimes,” Penny Wong said. “No amount of evasion, evasion or disinformation on the part of the Russian Federation can dismiss this fact”.

Russia, which has categorically rejected any responsibility since the tragedy, denounced a “political” decision after the condemnation in the Netherlands.

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