Malaysian Airlines has announced it will retire flight number MH17 from service as a mark of respect in memory of the 298 passengers who lost their lives when the plane was brought down in a fatal crash over East Ukraine on July 17.
The passenger plane was en route to Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam when the plane crashed over Ukrainian air space.
The carrier issued a statement, saying: “In light of the recent incident, Malaysia Airlines’ Amsterdam (AMS) – Kuala Lumpur (KUL) service, MH17 flight number will be retired out of respect for our crew and passengers of the mentioned flight code. This will take into effect on 25 July 2014.”
The airline, however, reiterated that there will be no changes to the frequency of its services and it “will continue to operate daily services between Amsterdam and Kuala Lumpur”.
The new flight number replacing MH17 will be MH19.
This is not the first time the carrier has retired a flight number, with earlier this year, Malaysian Airlines also announcing in March that it would no longer use the flight codes MH370 and MH371 ‘as a mark of respect’ to the 239 people on board its missing Beijing-bound passenger jet that vanished off the radar and has yet to be located.
The Kuala Lumpur-Beijing service has taken on the code MH318, while the return route will switch from MH371 to MH319.