NZ experts will help identify MH17 victims

Wellington -

New Zealand is sending three police officers to the Netherlands to help identify victims from Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, police said on Thursday.

A coffin of one of the victims of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 is carried from an aircraft during a national reception ceremony at Eindhoven Airport. Picture: Francois Lenoir. Credit: Reuters

Three disaster victim identification (DVI) specialists were en route to the Netherlands to work as part of an international DVI team headed by Dutch authorities at Hilversum, police national manager of operations Superintendent Barry Taylor said.

He said New Zealand had internationally recognised expertise in the field, with officers having worked in Thailand identifying victims of the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami; in Australia identifying victims of bush fires; and in their own country after the 2011 Christchurch earthquake.

“DVI work is an exacting, challenging process which takes time, but our staff will be very focussed on working with their international colleagues to identify the victims and help their grieving families,” he said. - Sapa-dpa