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Investigators: Missile that Downed MH17 was Brought in from Russia

  • VOA Staff

The reconstructed airplane serves as a backdrop during the presentation of the final report into the July 2014 crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, in Gilze Rijen, the Netherlands, October 13, 2015.

The reconstructed airplane serves as a backdrop during the presentation of the final report into the July 2014 crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, in Gilze Rijen, the Netherlands, October 13, 2015.

International investigators say a Malaysian airliner that crashed over eastern Ukraine in 2014 was shot down by a missile that was transported into Ukraine from Russia.

The findings released Wednesday confirm an earlier investigation by the Dutch Safety Board that concluded Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was brought down by a Russian-made Buk missile, a claim Russia has denied.

Investigators said there was convincing evidence the territory from which the missile was fired “was controlled by pro-Russian fighters.”

WATCH: Relatives of victims react to findings


In a move aimed at preempting the new investigation findings, Russia on Wednesday said its radar data proved that no rocket was fired from within territory held by pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine.

On a conference call with reporters, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russian radar identified all flying objects over the rebel territory, and there was no rocket.

“The data are clear-cut...there is no rocket,” he said. “If there was a rocket, it could only have been fired from elsewhere.”

The previous investigation identified a 320 square kilometer area where it said the rocket launch must have taken place. It did not explicitly say who had fired it, though all the land was controlled by separatists fighting Ukrainian forces.

All 298 passengers on the plane died after it broke apart midair while traveling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.

Prosecutors were meeting with family members of those deceased Wednesday morning prior to the formal announcement of their findings.

One of those family members, Robby Oehlers, whose niece Daisy was killed in the crash, told Reuters the investigation had identified 100 suspects and determined the rocket was launched from within rebel held territory.

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