Everything We Know About the Malaysia Airlines Attack

Tragic details are slowly coming in about the horrific attack on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 which was shot down by a surface-to-air missile over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people onboard. Many questions remain, including why the aircraft was flying over a war zone. “The usual flight route was earlier declared safe by the International Civil Aviation Organisation,” Malaysia Airlines said in a statement. “International Air Transportation Association has stated that the airspace the aircraft was traversing was not subject to restrictions.” The plane was struck down from an altitude of about 33,000 feet—far beyond the range of most weapons rebels in the area were thought to possess.

The question of responsibility looms large. Russia was quick to blame Ukraine itself, with President Vladimir Putin saying, “This tragedy wouldn’t have happened if there had been peace on this territory, if the military actions hadn’t been restarted in southeast Ukraine.” However, rebels are denying any involvement. Today in a statement confirming that one American was aboard flight MH17, President Barack Obama said the U.S. has “increasing confidence” that the missile was fired by pro-Russia separatists in the area, whose violence is “facilitated in large part because of Russian support” …

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