4,5 years after MH17 disaster Dutch ministry releases documents requested via FOI

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At January 10, 2019 Dutch journalist Pieter Klein working for  RTL Nieuws published a few screenshots of documents related to MH17. RTL Nieuws finally received the documents in January 2019 after a Freedom of Information request (in Dutch Wet Openbaarheid van Bestuur or WOB) was filed in 2014.

The documents show while the European Union stated in July 2014 it monitored safety over Ukraine airspace, Eurocontrol concluded a poor  risk-assessment of safety in European airspace was done and stresses this should be improved.

RTL Nieuws filed many WOB-requests related to MH17. Many were objected by the Dutch State until the highest Dutch court had to decide. This contrary to the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte stating ‘no stone will be unturned’ one day after the shotdown.

This Tweet shows the letter of Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure addressed to Dutch court Midden Nederland.

The first screenshot  shows a line in a Single Sky Committee (SSC)  document.  The Single Sky Committee (SSC) has been established to support the European Commission in the implementation of the Single European Sky. It is composed by two representatives of each European Union Member State (civil and military) and observers from third countries and EUROCONTROL.

On 1 and 2 July 2014, the 54th meeting of the Single Sky Committee (SSC 54) was held in
Brussels. Representatives of Dutch Ministry of Transport and Ministry of Defence attended this meeting.

The document related to  that meeting reads “The NM(Network Manager) is actively coordinating with all national and international bodies and airspace users to minimise any disruption and maintain safe flight operations arising from events in Ukraine”

Another document released after 4,5 years is this Eurocontrol  Provisional Council (PC/42) minutes of meeting at 4 – 5 December 2014. This meeting was attended by Rob Huyser, head of aviation of Dutch ministry of Infrastructure.


The Dutch Parliament Commission for Foreign Affairs interviewed IATA and Eurocontrol at Thursday January 28, 216  to find out more on MH17.

The Eurocontrol document  states “the Task Force confirmed the principles of state responsibility in sovereign or delegated airspace, the right of states to protect its citizens flying over other states and the NM (Network Manager) proposal emphasising the need for a system which allows for the sharing of reliable risk assessments for aviation in conflict zones, which would allow AOs (Aircraft Operators ) to make decisions on whether to operate in or near these conflict zones. ”

Another screenshot of an Eurocontrol document related to the Provisional Council (PC/42) meeting at 4 – 5 December 2014

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