Federal Government Expands Sanctions Against Russia Over Ukraine Violations

The Abbott government has expanded sanctions against Russia over its violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty.

The new sanctions include restrictions on arms exports and goods and services used in oil exploration or production. They include restrictions on the access of Russian state-owned banks to Australian capital markets and on Australian investment in Crimea.

Statement released by Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Expanded Sanctions Against Russia

The Government is deeply concerned by escalating events in Ukraine.

Russia has been engaged in a campaign to destabilise Ukraine for months. As a consequence, 38 people who called Australia home were brutally murdered, along with many others, when Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down from territory controlled by Russian-backed rebels with a Russian-supplied missile. [Read more…]


Federal Police To Join Multinational Mission At Flight MH17 Crash Site

The Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, held his seventh consecutive daily press conference today, appearing with the Federal Police Commissioner, Tony Negus, to announce that Australian police will join the Dutch-led multinational mission to the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.

Abbott said the mission “will be swift”. He said the Australian Federal Police officers will not be armed and that “meticulous planning” has gone into mitigating the risks in a “difficult environment”.

Media release from Prime Minister Tony Abbott:

Operation Bring Them Home: AFP to Join Dutch-led Multinational Police Mission

Australia will contribute to a Dutch-led multinational police mission to the crash site of MH17. I expect the first contingent of Australian police will arrive at the crash site later today with Dutch colleagues to begin their important work.

First and foremost, the purpose of the mission is to recover further remains from the site. The police mission also will seek to remove wreckage from the site and, to the extent possible, obtain information that will assist investigators. [Read more…]


Abbott Holds Sixth Press Conference In Six Days On Flight MH17

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has held his sixth press conference in six days on the recovery operation for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.

AbbottAs he has done throughout the week, Abbott stressed that Australia is engaged in a humanitarian operation.

Abbott said that “others can get involved if they wish in the politics of Eastern Europe. Our sole concern is to claim our dead and bring them home”.

He said: “That is our mission: to secure the remains, to assist the investigation, and to obtain justice for the victims and their loved ones.”

Abbott indicated that an agreement with the Ukrainian government to allow Australian police involvement in the investigation at the crash site has been negotiated but requires ratification by the Ukrainian parliament. [Read more…]


Another 100 Federal Police Deployed For MH17 Recovery; We Just Want To Bring Home Our Dead, Says Abbott

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has announced that a further 100 Australian Federal Police officers are being deployed to assist in the recovery and investigation of the attack on Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.

Abbott-Negus

The contingent of police officers will leave today. They will be “pre-deployed” to The Netherlands. Some will be armed.

Abbott said the government is “close to finalising” an arrangement for Australian police to assist in the investigation. [Read more…]


A Message From The Maslin-Norris Family

This message from the Maslin-Norris family has been released on their behalf by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Anthony Maslin and Marite Norris, from Perth, lost their children – Evie, 10, Mo, 12 and Otis, 8 – and the children’s grandfather, Nick Norris, in the attack on Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.

The graphic has been posted on Twitter by multiple users. Its provenance is unclear.

Maslin


Julie Bishop Called It For Australia And The World, Says Abbott; Operation Bring Them Home Underway

Prime Minister Tony Abbott says Operation Bring Them Home is underway for victims of the attack on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. Alleging evidence-tampering on an industrial scale at the crash site, Abbott praised Foreign Minister Julie Bishop for “calling it for Australia and the world” at the United Nations.

Abbott

Overnight, the 15-member United Nations Security Council, including Russia, unanimously supported a resolution calling for an international investigation into the attack on Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 last Friday. It demanded that armed groups in Ukraine allow access to the crash site and ensure that its integrity is maintained. [Read more…]


United Nations Security Council Adopts Australian-Led Resolution 2166 On Flight MH17

The United Nations Security Council has unanimously adopted an Australian-led resolution demanding an international investigation of the downed Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17.

Bishop

The 15-member Security Council, including Russia, adopted the resolution after minor amendments were made to satisfy Russia. One change replaced “shot down” with “downed”. Russia had the power to veto the resolution but did not do so.

The full text of the Resolution is shown below. [Read more…]