Russia denies owning missile that downed MH17
The BUK missile system used to shoot down flight MH17 over Eastern Ukraine in July 2014 belonged to the 53rd brigade of the Russian Armed Forces, the Joint Investigation Team revealed on Thursday. Russia denies this, NU.nl reports.
According to Russia, no Russian missile installation ever crossed the border between Russia and Ukraine. The Russian Ministry of Defense says it had nothing to do with the downing of flight MH17.
The investigators previously revealed that the BUK missile used to shoot down MH17 was transported from Russia to a field in Ukraine controlled by pro-Russian separatists. Now the JIT traced the BUK missile system to the 53rd brigade of the Russian Armed forces. Using photos and video on social media, and comparing them to Google streetview images, the JIT tracked a convoy of 53rd brigade vehicles - including the BUK used on MH17 - from the brigade's parking area in Kursk to Millerovo - 25 kilometers from the border with Ukraine. This convoy took place between June 23rd and June 25th, 2014.
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down over eastern Ukraine on July 17th, 2014. All 298 people on board the plane were killed, including 196 Dutch. The Joint Investigation Team is made up of the five countries most affected by the disaster - the Netherlands, Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine.
On Friday the Netherlands and Australia announced that they are formally holding Russia accountable for its role in this disaster.