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 Russia’s veto on UN MH17 investigation resolution is an ‘affront to the memory’ of victims, - Australian Foreign Minister

The Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop has lambasted Russia for using its veto power to block a United Nations proposal to establish an international criminal tribunal into the MH17 disaster.

Speaking at the UN Security Council in New York on Wednesday local time, Bishop said Russia's use of its veto power was "an affront to the memory of the 298 victims of MH17 and their families and friends", Censor.NET reports citing The Guardian.

Bishop said "the anticipated excuses and obfuscation by the Russian Federation should be treated with the utmost disdain".

The resolution to establish a criminal tribunal was supported by 11 countries, with Russia - as one of five permanent members with veto power - the only nation to vote against the proposal.

Read more: Vetoing MH17 tribunal can't stop justice, - U.S. representative Power

Angola, China and Venezuela abstained.

The Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down over eastern Ukraine on 17 July last year, an hour into its flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. All 298 passengers and crew, including 39 Australian citizens and residents, were killed.

Russia has denied any involvement in the shooting down of the airliner, but a Dutch-led investigation due to report in October is believed to support claims Russian-backed separatists were responsible.

Read more: Malaysia disillusioned by UN's failure to establish MH17 tribunal

Bishop, in a speech shortly after the vote, said it was "inconceivable the security council would now walk away from holding to account those who brought down a commercial aeroplane".

"The veto only compounds the atrocity," she said. "Only one hand was raised in opposition, but a veto should never be allowed to deny justice."

Bishop said "the anticipated excuses and obfuscation by the Russian Federation should be treated with the utmost disdain".

"The exercise of the veto today is an affront to the memory of the 298 victims of MH17 and their families and friends," Bishop said.

 
 
 
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