Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia must take a stand and seek justice for the victims of Malaysia Airlines plane downed over Ukraine last year, the country's defence minister on Friday said after Russia rejected its calls for setting up a UN tribunal to try those responsible for crashing the aircraft.
Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said that geopolitics and superpowers should not get in the way of justice for all the 298 people who died in the MH17 crash over eastern Ukraine.
"We must make our voices heard; we must find out who the culprits were and seek justice for the victims," he said.
"I personally want justice for MH17."
Hishammuddin said unlike Flight MH370, which is still missing, the authorities had enough evidence to seek justice for the MH17 passengers.
The Boeing 777 heading from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down over eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014.
Since the crash, controversies have continued over who downed the plane. Ukraine and the West suspect that it was destroyed by a Russian surface-to-air missile fired by Moscow-backed separatists fighting in the area.
Russia denies that and Russian officials and state media have alleged the plane was shot down by a Ukrainian missile.
Malaysia has told the UN Security Council that it plans to submit a resolution soon to set up an international tribunal to prosecute those responsible for shooting down the plane.
But Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov has been quoted as saying that his government was against the proposal as it was not timely, and counter-productive.
Russia is a veto-wielding member of the Security Council.
The Netherlands, Malaysia and three other countries want a tribunal to investigate the crime.
Hishammuddin said Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai had informed him that the final report on the MH17 would be out soon.
It was reported that the Dutch Safety Board has completed a draft report on MH17 with the final report expected to be out in October.