The Prime Minister of Australia has promised to confront Russian president Vladimir Putin for his role in the tragedy of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Prime Minister Tony Abbot told reporters early Monday that, even though Putin did not want to kill 298 innocent people, he needs to allow an investigation to confirm whether the shooters who took down the plane were using a weapon supplied by Russia.
Abbot said he would tell Putin,
We now demand that you [Russia] fully co-operate with the criminal investigation.
The two will meet at the G20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, next month, a trip Putin was not predicted to make. The relationship between the two countries has been strained since the attack, in which 38 Australians died.
Abbot even made a reference to an aggressive maneuver used on the soccer field when he described how he wants to approach Putin.
I’m going to shirt-front Mr Putin. I am going to be saying to Mr Putin Australians were murdered. There’ll be a lot of tough conversations with Russia and I suspect the conversation I have with Mr Putin will be the toughest conversation of all.
A shirt-front happens when a soccer player charges at another face-to-face, often leaping into the air to push the victim down.
Russia, along with the Ukrainian separatists, has yet to fully cooperate with a complete investigation of the crash.
Abbot added that, while many will cringe at the image of him shaking hands with Putin, his mind will be entirely focused on obtaining “assurance from him that he and Russia will do everything they can to ensure that now, at least, justice is done.”
Putin has so far denied having anything to do with MH17, despite evidence suggesting that the advanced ground-to-air missile used in the accidental attack came from Russia.
The widely-held belief is that Ukranian rebels mistook the passenger plane for military aircraft and fired, with the initial mistake so far being attributed to poor technology.
This is what a “shirtfront” actually looks like:
H/T: SMH, Photo Credit: Getty Images