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Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 Missile Was Russian-Made

Image: Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 Missile Was Russian-Made
The reconstructed cockpit of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

By    |   Tuesday, 13 Oct 2015 12:21 PM

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was downed by a Russian-made missile, a five-nation investigative team led by Dutch authorities said Tuesday after a 15-month inquiry.

"Flight MH17 crashed as a result of the detonation of a warhead outside the airplane above the left-hand side of the cockpit," said Tjibbe Joustra, chairman of the Dutch Safety Board, according to The New York Times. "It is likely that the occupants were barely able to comprehend their situation."

The cause of the July 17, 2014 incident, which killed all 298 people aboard, was identified in part by a distinctive shrapnel pattern found in the cockpit near where the missile hit the Boeing 777. A meteor, an air-to-air missile, and an internal explosion, were all ruled out as the cause of the crash.

As the BBC reported, the 9N314M warhead was likely fitted to a 9M38M1 missile, which was in turn launched by the Buk surface-to-air missile system.

On Tuesday, Russia released a competing report on the incident, saying the missile most likely came from Ukrainian-held territory, and that the missile was and is not part of Russia's arsenal. They also blew up a civilian airline fuselage with a different missile, but did not elaborate on how that proved the missile that downed MH17 was launched from Ukrainian-held territory.

Elsewhere, rebel forces "did not have a Buk anti-air defence system at that time," said Eduard Basurin, deputy defence minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic in eastern Ukraine.

"Why was Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 flying over an area where an armed conflict was taking place?" Joustra asked. "The question was on the minds of many people after the crash. The answer was as straightforward as it is disquieting: almost all operators were flying over that area. And why? Because nobody thought that civil aviation was at risk."

Russia vetoed a draft resolution at the UN Security Council to set up an international tribunal in July, making it unclear if any sort of criminal charges will be brought.

The flight, bound from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, primarily carried Dutch nationals, along with 27 Australians, 10 Britons, 4 Germans and 1 Canadian. No Americans were on the flight.



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Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was downed by a Russian-made missile, a five-nation investigative team led by Dutch authorities said Tuesday after a 15-month inquiry.
malaysia airlines, flight 17, missile
365
2015-21-13
Tuesday, 13 Oct 2015 12:21 PM
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