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Dutch authorities release MH17 probe reports

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The Hague: Dutch authorities on Tuesday released the findings of their probe into the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash over the conflict-hit region in eastern Ukraine in July 2014, in which all 298 people on board were killed.

The Dutch Safety Board (DSB) presented its findings first to the victims’ families and relatives and then to the media at the Gilze-Rijen military base in the Netherlands.

Relatives of the victims have confirmed that the DSB reports concluded that the MH17 was hit by a Russian-made Buk missile, The Guardian reported.

Speaking to reporters in the Hague after being shown early copies of the report, relatives also revealed that all the passengers died or lost consciousness as soon as the missile hit. Buk missile shrapnel was found inside the bodies of some of the crew members.

The investigators are due to release an animated simulation of what they think happened to MH17.

Barry Sweeney, whose son Liam died in the crash, told BBC that according to investigators, the cockpit was hit first and broke off from the rest of the plane.

“It hit the cockpit first, killing all three in the cockpit. The cockpit then broke off probably creating confusion in the rest of the plane. Hopefully most people were unconscious by the time this happened.”

“We can’t be 100 percent sure (that nobody suffered on the flight) but we’ve got to sort of think that was the case.”

He said investigators concluded that the missile was fired from a 320 km.sq. area.

Sweeney said the relatives would have to wait for the criminal report early next year to find out more about what happened.

The flight was en route from Amsterdam to the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur and was travelling over the conflict-hit Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014 when it came down. Those killed in the crash comprised 283 passengers – of which 80 were children – and 15 crew members.

(IANS)

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BBC Demands White House Security Review After Cameraman Attacked at Trump Rally

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said journalists should never be assaulted for just doing their jobs.

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Donald Trump, BBC
FILE - U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a rally in El Paso, Texas, Feb. 11, 2019. The British Broadcasting Corporation has asked the White House for a review of security arrangements after a BBC cameraman was assaulted at the rally. VOA

The British Broadcasting Corporation is asking the White House for a security review after a BBC cameraman was attacked at a Trump rally Monday night in El Paso, Texas.

Camera Ron Skeans was unhurt after a Trump supporter wearing a trademark “Make America Great Again” hat jumped onto the media platform and started shoving him.

BBC reporter Gary O’Donoghue said the man tried to smash the camera before he was restrained. He could be heard yelling profanities at TV reporters and crews as another Trump supporter pulled him away.

President Trump paused, asked if everything was “OK,” and continued his speech about building a border wall, and talking more about the “totally dishonest media.”

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O’Donoghue says the attack came after Trump “repeatedly goaded the crowd over supposed media bias.”

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said Tuesday “President Trump condemns all acts of violence against any individual or group of people, including members of the press. We ask that anyone attending an event to do so in a peaceful and respectful manner.”

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said journalists should never be assaulted for just doing their jobs.

“There is a broader issue here, which is that last year, 80 journalists were killed across the world. … We are very worried about this,” he said.

A BBC bureau chief said there was no security around the media platform, and no policemen intervened during or after the cameraman was assaulted.

ALSO READ: ‘Little to No’ Progress in North Korea’s Military Capabilities, Says US General

The media has been one of Trump’s chief targets for insults since he started his presidential campaign. He has berated reporters during news conferences, accused television networks of lying, and constantly refers to The New York Times — the country’s premier newspaper — as “failing” and “gutless.” (VOA)