Ukrainian president arrives in Australia to discuss MH17 tragedy

Canberra, Dec 11: Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko arrived in Australia on Thursday morning ahead of a two-day visit, in which he will address the MH17 tragedy with Australian leaders.

Both Poroshenko and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott will attend a prayer vigil for the 298 victims of the disaster in Melbourne, before discussing cooperative measures regarding the investigation of the incident.

MH 17

The Malaysia Airlines' aircraft was shot down in eastern Ukraine in July, killing all passengers on board, including 38 Australian residents.

Australia supports Ukraine's claims that the aircraft was gunned down by Russian-backed rebels.

Abbott has since accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of providing both the missiles that shot down the plane and military support to the rebels.

However, Putin has constantly reiterated that Ukraine must take full responsibility for the incident.

The pair held tense discussions regarding the disaster at the recent G20 summit in Brisbane, where Abbott urged the Russian leader to "compensate and apologise" to the families of the 298 victims.

"I want to say thank you to (Ukraine) President (Petro Oleksiyovych) Poroshenko for the help and assistance that Ukraine and its government gave to Australia and our citizens in the aftermath of the terrible atrocity of MH17," Abbott said in a press conference Thursday.

"Coming from this tragedy I believe will be a strong and lasting friendship between the Australian people and the Ukrainian people."

Poroshenko also revealed that Australia is considering exporting uranium to Ukraine as the two nations prepare to undertake nuclear energy talks.


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