THE HAGUE: Dutch prosecutors said Sunday they would "seriously study" claims by citizen journalists to have identified Russian soldiers implicated in the crash of flight MH17, shot down over eastern Ukraine in July 2014.
The claims are made by a British-based group of "citizen investigative journalists" called Bellingcat, which specialises in trawling through data on social media and other open sources.
"We received the report just after Christmas," Wim de Bruin, a spokesman for the Dutch prosecutor's office, told AFP.
"We will seriously study it and determine whether it can be used for the criminal inquiry," de Bruin said.
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was downed over war-torn eastern Ukraine on July 17 2014 by a BUK surface-to-air missile, killing all 298 onboard, air crash investigators said last October.
Western nations and Ukraine say the missile was fired from pro-Russian separatist-held territory, but Moscow denies the claim, pointing the finger instead at the Ukrainian military.
The Netherlands have launched a criminal probe into those responsible for the shooting, but many experts doubt whether it will succeed.
In 2014, Bellingcat reported that a BUK mobile