The Foreign Secretary chaired a meeting of officials from across Whitehall, the police and representatives of the agencies this afternoon on the ongoing efforts around the MH17 disaster.
Strong concerns were raised around the lack of progress being made to secure access to the crash site to recover and repatriate the victims. As the Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary have set out, President Putin should use his influence to ensure that separatists allow immediate and unhindered access as quickly as possible and that the victims are treated with dignity and respect. It is completely unacceptable that the Russian government blocked further pressure from the UNSC on this very issue, claiming that there is no issue around access.
Two UK police experts are now in Kyiv meeting with the Ukrainian authorities and their international counterparts, and stand ready to move on to the crash site.
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office continue to provide consular support to the families of the victims and are working with families to provide flights, accommodation and translation assistance to those wishing to travel to Kyiv or Amsterdam. We are also working with family members to protect victims from the possibility of financial and identify fraud.
The Foreign Secretary will attend the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels on Tuesday where he will be working with EU colleagues to put pressure on Russia through further sanctions.
The Prime Minister will speak to President Putin and Prime Minister Abbott later this evening.