The investigation by the Dutch Safety Board has concluded that Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down by a Buk missile that was fired from rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine, according to a Dutch newspaper. The official report is due to be released on Tuesday.
Three sources told De Volkskrant newspaper that the year-long investigation concluded with certainty that the Buk missile was fired from territory held by pro-Russian rebels. The report includes marked areas on a map from which the missile must have been fired in order to hit Flight MH17. The investigation does not address who may have fired the missile, as that is the subject of a criminal investigation.
“Either way, the Buk was developed and produced in Russia. You can assume that those rebels can’t control a Buk-device themselves. I suspect they did with the help of former Russian soldiers,” two sources told the newspaper.
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crashed near the city of Torez in eastern Ukraine in July 2014, killing all 298 passengers and crew in the world’s deadliest aviation disaster since the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States. It was quickly assumed that the aircraft was downed by a surface-to-air missile fired from separatist-controlled territory, though separatists there have denied being responsible.
An earlier, preliminary report by the Dutch Safety Board said that puncture holes in the aircraft’s wreckage suggest that small objects penetrated the aircraft in both the cockpit and forward sections. Holes were also found on the cockpit floor. Through analysis, the damage to the body of the aircraft is consistent with “high-energy objects” piercing the aircraft from the outside, the report said.
The final report by the Dutch Safety Board will be released at 1:15 p.m. CET (7:15 a.m. ET) on Tuesday.
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