MH17: MAS to pay remaining next of kin soon

IPOH - Malaysia Airlines (MAS) will swiftly pay the families who have yet to be compensated for the deaths of their loved ones who were on board the ill-fated Flight MH17, Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said yesterday.

Datuk Seri Liow said he hoped the payments could be made before the one-year anniversary of Flight MH17, which was shot down over Ukrainian air space on July 17 last year. All 283 passengers and 15 crew on board were killed.

"To my understanding, only a few families have not received their compensation," he said, adding that the process of determining "the rightful beneficiaries" was still ongoing.

A memorial service will be held at the Bunga Raya Complex at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport on July 11 to remember those who were on board the flight, Mr Liow told reporters on Saturday.

Some 1,000 attendees are expected to be at the event. They include the next of kin of the victims, Prime Minister Najib Razak, ministers, ambassadors of affected nations, MAS management and crew as well as religious leaders of various faiths.

"I call on all Malaysians to join us in prayer as we remember the victims who died in this devastating tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers have and will always be with the families and loved ones of those on board MH17," Mr Liow said.

Flight MH17 was believed to have been shot down by a surface-to-air missile launched by pro-Russian forces in Ukrainian territory, charges which Russia has denied.

The Netherlands, whose citizens made up almost two-thirds of the victims, is leading an international investigation into the disaster and has vowed to prosecute those responsible.

Mr Liow also urged the United Nations and the International Civil Aviation Organisation to ensure justice for Malaysia by making sure investigators of the tragedy worked fast to come up with a report on the incident and identify the culprits responsible.

"We are very concerned. We want to know who is the perpetrator responsible for the downing of the plane," he said.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 29, 2015, with the headline 'MH17: MAS to pay remaining next of kin soon'. Print Edition | Subscribe