A Malaysian passenger airliner with 295 people on board was shot down near the border of Ukraine and Russia, according to a number of reports.
Reuters reported that one of its correspondents in Eastern Ukraine saw the burning wreckage of an airplane, with bodies on the ground.
The airliner, carrying 280 passengers and 15 crew members, was shot down at an altitude of 10,000 metres above eastern Ukraine, the Ukrainian bureau of the Russia-based news agency Interfax reported. The Boeing plane was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says his country’s armed forces did not shoot at any airborne targets.
“We do not exclude that this plane was shot down, and we stress that the Armed Forces of Ukraine did not take action against any airborne targets,” he said.
Malaysia Airlines tweeted that it has lost contact with Flight MH17 and that the last known contact with the aircraft was over Amsterdam.
The flight tracking website Flight Aware shows an aborted flight path for Flight MH17 that ends over western Ukraine near the border with Poland.
The Associated Press reported that Anton Gerashenko, an adviser to Ukraine’s interior minister, said on his Facebook page the plane was flying at an altitude of 10,000 metres when it was hit Thursday by a missile fired from a Buk launcher.
This was the second time that a Malaysia Airlines plane had gone missing in less than six months. Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared in March while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. It has not been found, but the search has been concentrated in the Indian Ocean far west of Australia.
((Sourced from CBC.ca))