MH17 investigation: First results released this afternoon

The Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash site in Ukraine. Source: Twitter/ @mashableThe Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash site in Ukraine. Source: Twitter/ @mashable

This afternoon the Public Prosecutor is presenting the first results of the criminal investigation into the downing of flight MH17 over Eastern Ukraine in July 2014. These results are expected to reveal what type of weapon shot down the plane and where it was fired from, the Telegraaf reports.

The relatives of the victims will be the first to hear the results on Wednesday at a meeting in Nieuwegein. At around 1:00 p.m. a  press conference will be held to make the results public.

According to RTL Nieuws, the location the missile was fired from is almost certainly in a region in Eastern Ukraine controlled by Russian rebels. When the Dutch Safety Board presented the results of its investigation last year, the researchers pointed to a large area in this region as the possible location for the missile fire. It is expected that the Public Prosecutor will pinpoint the more exact location today.

British newspaper The Guardian reports that the missile was fired from a field south of the town Snizhe. According to the newspaper, Russian troops were active there on the day MH17 was shot down. When they realized they shot a passenger aircraft, the missile launcher was smuggled across the border back to Russia the following day.

On Monday the Russians gave a press conference in which the Russian Defense Ministry released radar images, supposedly of the time MH17 was shot down. Up until now, Russia has refused to release these images. Nothing out of the usual can be seen on the images. And according to the Russians, this shows that MH17 was not shot down from a separatist controlled are.

When the Dutch Safety Board presented its report last year, Russia did the same thing. Hours before the presentation the maker of BUK missiles gave a presentation saying that the Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down by an old Ukrainian missile.

The investigation into the perpetrators behind the attack, is still ongoing. It is unclear when this investigation is expected to yield results.

According to the Telegraaf, missiles were secretly fired in Finland as part of the criminal investigation, in an attempt to determine exactly which type of BUK missile was used in shooting down the plane.

The Public Prosecutor in the Netherlands leads the international team that is doing the criminal investigation.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was downed over Eastern Ukraine on July 17th, 2014. All 298 people on board were killed, 196 of whom were Dutch.