MH17 Update: Lawsuits Filed on Behalf of MH17 Families

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October 12, 2015

It's been over 450 days since Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down by a surface-to-air missile in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people onboard. The plane was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it fell from the sky, presumably after being hit with an SA-11 missile system (known as a Buk). Ukraine and numerous other governments have placed blame for the MH17 tragedy on Russian-supported separatists.

As families of those killed in the MH17 crash eagerly await a Dutch report on the July 14, 2014 incident, expected to be released in the next couple of days, two lawsuits are now going after both Russia and Ukraine. One of the MH17 lawsuits was filed in U.S. federal court back in July on behalf of 18 MH17 families. That lawsuit, which targets both Malaysia Airlines and Igor Girkin (better known as Igor Strelkov, a Russian army artillery veteran who played a key role in the War in Donbass), is seeking $50 million for each victim (a total of $900 million).

The MH17 lawsuit claims that the deaths were extrajudicial killings committed using missiles transported from Russia to Ukraine. According to the International Business Times, the MH17 lawsuit further claims that Malaysia Airlines deliberately operated a flight plan flight over an internationally-recognized conflict zone.

The other reported MH17 lawsuit, filed in Germany, casts blame on the Ukrainian government for not closing its airspace at a time when the country was embroiled in a conflict with Russian separatists.

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