Investigators confirm surface-to-air missile downed Malaysian plane

Oct 13, 2015 9:21 AM by Cheryl Wengren

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) - The official Dutch Safety Board report on the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight 17 says a missile exploded less than four feet outside the cockpit, killing three crewmembers inside and breaking off the forward section of the plane.

The safety board chairman said the 15-month the investigation found the warhead was that used on a Buk surface-to-air missile system.

Though the board declined to comment further on the exact launch site, all the territory within the area it identified was in rebel hands at the time of the July 2014 crash.

MH17, carrying 298 people, was shot down while overflying an area of eastern Ukraine where government forces are fighting pro-Moscow rebels.

The Dutch official says Ukraine authorities had "sufficient reason" to completely close the airspace in that area, but "nobody gave a thought" to the possible threat to civil aviation.


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