John Key: 'We're now in the ridiculous situation where a
proper investigation can't take place because the right
people are not stepping up to the plate and doing something
Prime Minister John Key says he is "deeply concerned" by
the lack of access to the MH17 crash site and has called on
Vladimir Putin to ''stand up'' on the issue.
At his first press conference since a pre-election break in
Hawaii, Mr Key said the Government had called on the Russian
President to show leadership.
"He now needs to stand up and tell the rebels to back off to
ensure that there's access [to the crash site] and a full
corridor of access, so that all information can be gathered.
"This is a time of enormous trauma and stress for the
families involved and when we see reports of passports and
other information being removed, that is simply adding to the
stress," Mr Key said.
"Those families absolutely at the bare minimum deserve access
to the black box, to all of the information and for all of
those who are responsible to be held to account.
"International leadership is required - President Putin has
to show that leadership and we are deeply concerned that a
24-hour organised ceasefire's failing to deliver the results
- and we feel deeply for the New Zealanders involved."
Mr Key said he had spoken to Australian Prime Minister Tony
Abbott and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak about the
tragedy and would be talking to Netherlands Prime Minister
Mark Rutte later today.
"Together we have been very I think shocked, stunned and very
saddened by what's taken place.
"I think, outside of all of this, it actually adds to the
stress of international travellers generally, this is now a
time where people will be concerned and that is now another
"The international community has to step up and it has to
demand of President Putin - as the only person who can really
make this happen - to ensure that those rebels back off and
that a proper, thorough and full investigation can take
"We can't sit back in what is a totally unacceptable
situation," Mr Key said.
"I think every international leader is now concerned by what
they see...a commercial airline has been shot out of the sky,
298 people have lost their lives and we're now in the
ridiculous situation where a proper investigation can't take
place because the right people are not stepping up to the
plate and doing something about it."
A free trade deal with Russia was now "the furthest thing
from our mind", Mr Key said.
"At the end of the day what we are concerned about is justice
for those families that lost a loved one."