Russia, Ukraine to Discuss Compensations to Relatives of Tu-154 Crash Victims

Russia and Ukraine are about to launch into three-day consultations in Kiev about compensations to the relatives of the victims of the plane crash of October 4th, 2001. Contrary to international practice, Ukraine has so far refused to pay compensations to relatives of the people that died when a Ukrainian missile hit the passenger jet above the Black Sea.

The jet was brought down by Ukraine's S-200 missile, which was fired in the course of an air defence exercise in the Crimea. The crash killed 78 people, namely 66 passengers /most of them Israelis/ and 12 crew.

The victims' relatives did not wait until interstate talks were over but instead filed a claim to Kiev's Pechorsky District Court for compensation of moral and material damages. As of today, the Pechorsky Court is considering three claims: one by the relatives of the jet's flight engineer Valery Laptev, one by the relatives of the second pilot Boris Levchugov, and a united claim by 13 relatives of other pilots and passengers. The government, the defence ministry and the Treasury of Ukraine are the defendants. According to lawyers, the sum demanded in the claims totals several million hryvnas.

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