10:55 Sep. 27, 2016
Tony Abbot dismissed claims Russian-backed separatists weren't at fault
Former prime minister Tony Abbott is urging Russia to own up to its role in the fatal downing of flight MH17, amid claims new evidence shows rebels weren't to blame. This is according to news.com.au.
Mr Abbott, who was prime minister at the time of the crash, dismissed the claim.
'Russians would say that,' he said on Tuesday.
The evidence showed a Russian missile battery crossing the border into Ukraine, downing the jet and heading back to Russia, he said.
Mr Abbott doesn't lay personal blame solely with Russian President Vladimir Putin but says the leader bears a heavy responsibility.
'I think the sooner Russia owns up to its role in all of this, and does what it can to offer restitution to the families of the victims, the better.'
The Russian military claim comes two days before a Dutch-led investigative team is to release a report on where the missile was fired.
A Dutch Safety Board investigation reported last year a missile was fired from rebel-held territory, but did not specify who had fired it.
Russia has consistently rejected allegations that rebels fired the missile.