Malaysia Airlines MH17 shot down: All that we know
Zee Media Bureau
The aircraft: Boeing 777-200ER, the same model as that of MH370 which went missing in March.
Built in 1997 and its first flight was on July 17, 1997; it crashed exactly 17 years later on July 17, 2014.
The flight path: MH17 was flying from Amsterdam`s Schiphol Airport to Kuala Lumpur International Airport. It had left Amsterdam at 10:15 GMT, contact was lost four hours later at 14:15 GMT.
After take off, MH17 was flying at an altitude of 31,000 feet but climbed to 33,000 feet after it entered Ukrainian airspace as the airspace below 32,000 feet was closed for commercial traffic due to the ongoing conflict in the war-torn nation.
Souls on board
283 passengers and 15 crew members were on board the plane when it crashed in eastern Ukarine. All are feared dead.
Nationalities of the passengers: 154 Dutch, 27 Australians, 23 Malaysians, 11 Indonesians, 6 British, 4 Germans, 4 Belgians, 3 Philippinos and 1 Canadian.
MH17 was just 50 kilometres from Russia and about to enter the Russian airspace when it went off the radar.
As per reports, it was shot down by a missile fired from Russian made BUK missles have an launcher medium-range surface-to-air missile system. The BUK missiles travel at speeds in excess of Mach 3 and has a maximum target altitude of 22,000 metres (72,000ft)
While Ukranian official Anton Herashchenko claimed that the missile was fired by “terrorists”, however, Andrei Purgin, Deputy PM of the pro-Russian Donestsk People`s Republic said that their missiles could only reach 13,000 ft and suggested that the Ukranian government may be behind the shooting.
Ukraine has accused Russia`s military of supplying advanced missiles to the rebels amid reports that a BUK was moved in the area.
With group claiming responsibility for the incident, it will be a while before truth will be know. However, reports have suggested that the shooting down of the plane may be a case of mistaken identity.
What led credence to the theory is a Facebook post by a Russian separatist leader where he announced that they shot down Ukrainian AN-26. He later deleted his status.
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