Missile Caused The Malaysian Airlines Crash In Ukraine: Report

Debris from a Malaysian Airlines flight that crashed in Ukraine in 2014, killing nearly 300 people.
A Malaysian Airlines flight that crashed in Ukraine last year, killing all 298 people on board, was shot down by a missile, an independent investigation confirmed.

Flight MH17 crashed in eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014, in an area where conflict between pro-Russian rebels and the country's government had escalated.

Ukraine and other nations have said the separatist fighters backed by Russia took down the plane, while Russia has said Ukraine is to blame. The report, released Tuesday by the Dutch Safety Board, does not specify who fired the missile. The type of warhead used — a Russian-made Buk surface-to-air missile — is available to both Russian and Ukrainian forces, according to the BBC.

Investigators did conclude, however, that airspace above the area should have been closed "as a precaution," given the risk created by the conflict on the ground.

The report also urges the aviation industry to “take more account of the changing world within which it operates” — a world in which it said conflicts “are more disorderly and less predictable than ‘traditional’ wars between states.”

“The aviation sector should take urgent measures to identify, assess, and manage the risks associated with flying over conflict zones more effectively,” the report said.

The crash of flight MH17, which was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, was one of two catastrophic incidents involving Malaysian Airlines flights in a span of less than six months last year.

In March 2014, Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 vanished from its planned route between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing. Although some pieces of debris that are believed to be from the aircraft have since been recovered, the plane itself was never found. All 239 passengers and crew aboard that flight are presumed dead.

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