Posted by News Express | 18 July 2014 | 3,410 times
Eighty 80 children are reported to be among the 298 people killed when a Malaysia Airlines jet crashed near the eastern Ukraine border on Thursday.
Both pro-Russian rebels and the Ukrainian government denied shooting the aircraft down after US authorities said intelligence analysis showed it had been hit by a surface-to-air missile.
Pictures and video from the scene showed bodies strewn around the site of the crash amid the charred wreckage of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17, which fell to Earth near the town of Grabovo, about 50km from the Russia-Ukraine border.
The area has seen fierce fighting between Ukrainian forces and separatist rebels, who have shot down several military planes and helicopters in the past.
The passengers on the flight included 154 Dutch, 27 Australians, 38 Malaysians - including 15 crew, 11 people from Indonesia, four Germans, four Belgians, three from the Philippines and one Canadian.
The Ukrainian Interior Ministry said 23 US citizens were travelling on the aircraft and nationalities of the remaining passengers were still being confirmed.
Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak said on Friday that the Malaysia Airlines jetliner did not make any distress call, adding that its flight route had been declared safe by the global civil aviation body. He added investigators “will leave no stone unturned”.
While the cause of the crash has not been determined, US Vice President Joe Biden cautiously suggested the crash was “not an accident” and that the jet had “apparently blown out of the sky”, while a US official said that, while its origin was unclear, a surface-to-air missile was probably responsible.
“I say ‘apparently’ because we don’t actually have all the details. I want to be sure of what I say. Apparently, shot down. Shot down, not an accident. Blown out of the sky,” he said.
The Boeing 777-200 departed Amsterdam at 12.14am local time bound for Kuala Lumpur, 15 minutes later than scheduled, according to flight records.
It should have arrived in Malaysia at 6:10am local time, but did not enter Russian airspace when it was expected to, a Russian aviation source told Reuters.
•Excerpted from The Independent (UK) report. Photo shows grieving relatives of some of the passengers in the crashed Malaysia Airlines flight.
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