An Australian couple who lost all three of their children when Flight MH17 was shot down over the Ukraine have described the birth of their new daughter as an “amazing gift”.
Violet May Maslin was born in Perth on Tuesday. She is the fourth child of Anthony Maslin and Marite Norris, whose children Mo, Evie and Otis, along with Ms Norris’s father Nick Morris, were killed when their flight came down in July 2014.
“Violet’s birth is a testament to our belief that love is stronger than hate,” they said in a statement.
“We still live with pain, but Violet, and the knowledge that all four kids are with us always, brings light to our darkness.
“As Martin Luther King said, ‘Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that’.”
Evie Maslin (10), Mo Maslin (12) and Otis Maslin (8) were on board the Malaysia Airlines flight with their grandfather when it was shot down as it flew over conflict-torn Ukraine on a journey from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.
The aeroplane had been struck by a Russian-made Buk surface-to-air missile. Neither the Ukrainian nor the Russian authorities have claimed responsibility for the attack.
Mr Maslin and Ms Norris survived the incident as they had remained behind in Amsterdam while the rest of their family flew back to Australia.
In total, 298 passengers and crew were killed, including 80 children.
At the time of the tragedy, the couple issued a statement through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, saying that it was the love and support of friend that kept them going.
“No hate in the world is as strong as the love we have for our children, for Mo, for Evie, for Otis,” they said.
“No hate in the world is as strong as the love we have for Grandad Nick.
“No hate in the world is as strong as the love we have for each other.
“This is a revelation that gives us some comfort.”