ACT News


Family of Canberra MH17 victim Liliane Derden in Belgium for funeral

The family of Canberra victim of the MH17 disaster in the Ukraine, Liliane Derden, have travelled to Belgium after they were notified by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade two weeks ago that her body had been identified.

Ms Derden's daughters and partner left Canberra in the last few days to join her Belgium family for a funeral service in the coming weeks.

It is not known how her remains will be then be brought home, but it is understood this will occur in November.

Ms Derden was on her way back from visiting family members in Belgium on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 when it was was shot down by a surface-to-air missile on July 17.

She was one of the 38 Australians among the 298 passengers and crew on board who were all killed in the attack.

Bodies have slowly been identified and flown back to Australia aboard RAAF transport planes, and then handed back to loved ones after identification procedures are completed and death certificates issued.


Ms Derden grew up in the town of Brascheet in Belgium as the youngest of nine children with four brothers and four sisters.

She moved Down Under after meeting her former partner who was Australian and lived in Canberra's Ainslie and later, the town of Hall.

Mother to two grown-up daughters, Chelsea and Cassandra, Ms Derden became a grandmother in late December last year.

Ms Derden was remembered in July at an overflowing memorial service at the Kamberra Winery in Canberra's North.

Family friend and former co-worker Carly Taylor gave the eulogy on behalf of the family said that "all their worlds changed" as a result of the crisis.

Ms Taylor said she remembered Ms Derden as someone you could "laugh with and laugh at" and who "would adopt anyone needing help". 

A German magazine  Der Spiegel reported on Sunday that Germany's foreign intelligence service had completed a detailed analysis of the incident finding that the plane was shot down by pro-Russian rebels using a missile taken from a Ukraine military base.

Last week Prime Minister Tony Abbott promised to "shirt-front" Russian President Vladimir Putin, and demand answers from him on behalf of families who lost family members in the MH17 disaster.

The pair will meet when Mr Putin attends the G20 in Brisbane in November.