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MH17 Ukraine plane crash: 'Key witness' released

September 6, 2019 6:06 am

A Ukrainian court has released a potentially key witness to the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 five years ago.

Volodymyr Tsemakh was seized earlier this year from a separatist-held part of Ukraine.

He is reported to have played a key role in the rebels’ air defences.

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On 17 July 2014, the jet was travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it was was hit by a missile over eastern Ukraine. All 298 people on board died.

The downing of the aircraft came amid intense fighting between Ukrainian troops and Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine. Some 13,000 people have died in the conflict over the last five years.

A team of international criminal investigators said in 2016 that the missile had been fired from a field controlled by Russian-backed separatists.

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