Forensic team identifies 23 victims of MH17 crash

Experts at military base are using DNA samples and dental records to identify 298 dead

Dutch, Australian and Malaysian members of the repatriation mission of the MH17 plane crash get ready for departure to the Netherlands at the airport in Kharkiv, Ukraine today. Photograph: Jerry Lampen/ EPA

Dutch, Australian and Malaysian members of the repatriation mission of the MH17 plane crash get ready for departure to the Netherlands at the airport in Kharkiv, Ukraine today. Photograph: Jerry Lampen/ EPA

Fri, Aug 8, 2014, 16:08

The Dutch-led forensic team working on the remains of the passengers of Malaysia Airlines flight 17 has identified 23 victims so far.

Justice Ministry spokesman Jean Fransman said those include 18 Dutch, two Malaysians, a Canadian, a German and a Briton. All their families have been notified, the ministry added.

Flight 17 was shot down last month over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 aboard. Pro-Russian rebels have publicly denied downing the plane but one top rebel has said the insurgents were involved.

In all, 228 coffins have been brought to the Netherlands but it is not known how many victims that represents. The forensic experts at a military base in Hilversum are using DNA samples and dental records in a process expected to take months.

PA