Today, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT), who is conducting a criminal investigation into the case, made public the names of four suspects allegedly involved in the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine in July 2014. This tragic incident, almost 5 years ago, cost the lives of 298 people, including several compatriots. The Dutch judicial authorities also announced that the trial of these suspects will begin in the Netherlands in March 2020 and that the investigation will proceed in the meantime.
Belgium congratulates Estonia, Niger, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Tunisia and Vietnam on their election as non-permanent members of the United Nations Security Council. They will join the Council for a period of two years from January 1st 2020.
Today is the International Day for Peacekeepers. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders wishes to pay a special tribute to the more than 100.000 men and women, originating from 122 countries, who serve with dedication under the flag of the United Nations in the fourteen peacekeeping operations deployed around the world. Through their engagement and their courage, they embody the ideals of the United Nations.
May 17 is the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT). On that day in 1990, the World Health Organization decided to remove homosexuality from the internationally used list of diseases. This year IDAHOT focuses on Justice and protection for all.
An international campaign for women's and girls' rights, a partnership with the private sector on sustainable chocolate, hackathons in the South and innovation in humanitarian aid. These are a few highlights of the 2018 annual report of the Belgian Development Cooperation published today.
Didier Reynders, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs and Minister of Defence, mandated Ambassador Renier Nijskens, Special Envoy for the Great Lake region, and Major General Philippe Boucké, Deputy Chief of Staff at the Ministry of Defence, to undertake a mission to Kinshasa from the 12th to the 15th of May 2019.
Because of the elections organized at the Embassy for Belgians who have registered for this, the consular offices of the Embassy will be exceptionally closed on Wednesday 22 May 2019.
Thank you for your understanding.