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Malaysia Airlines Plane Shot Down While Over Ukraine

Updated: Sunday, July 20 2014, 04:12 AM CDT

UPDATED: A downed flight.

Hundreds left dead or missing and the beginnings of a controversy over the doomed Malaysian flight 17, shot down over eastern Ukraine

FOX News Senior Foreign Affairs Correspondent Amy Kellogg tells us how Ukraine's President is reacting to what some call "an act of terror" and who he says is to blame.

For the attack, Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur with, 295 people on board was apparently shot down in Ukraine, between the towns of Nizhne and Torez, about 20 miles from the Russian border.

"The Ukrainian authorities believe that the plane was shot down. At this stage, however, Malaysia is unable to verify the cause of this tragedy.

Ukraine's president says the Boeing 777 was shot down and not by his forces.

"I would like to bring your your attention to the fact that we are not calling it an accident or a disaster, but an act of terror."

Ukraine's Security Chief went a step further saying he had phone intercepts between Russian military intelligence officers he claims were involved in the attack discussing the downing of the plane, and then finally, the realization that they had shot down a passenger aircraft.

Meantime, around the time of the crash, the military leader of the Donetsk People's Republic, on social media, boasted that his forces had shot down a Ukrainian Antonov 26 transport plane... in the exact spot where the Malaysian Flight came down.

Shortly after, that social media post was deleted. Various rebel spokesmen subsequently denied responsibility for the crash, blaming instead Ukraine's army

The separatists have shot down planes before--and as recently as yesterday. Back in June they shot down a transport plane killing 49. They shot down another transport plane Monday.

Rebels do claim they have found the plane's black box and have indicated they will hand it over to Russia.

President Obama has offered condolences and help.

So has Russian president Vladimir Putin.

The Malaysian PM says he has spoken to the Ukrainian President about creating a humanitarian corridor to the crash site. He also said that any relatives of the victims of the crash can be flown to Kiev if they want to be in Ukraine. He said the investigation must not be hindered in any way.

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UPDATE: Live reports describe a graphic aftermath of the plane's wreckage: "There are bodies scattered everywhere."

ABC Australia North America Correspondent tweeted, "President Obama not confirming if there were 23 US citizens on board crashed plane #MH17."

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A passenger plane went down in Ukraine near the Russian border, after Malaysian Air reported that it "lost contact" with the plane, which was carrying 280 passengers and 15 crew members. 


The plane was traveling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lampur, but the airlines 
tweeted that MH17's "last known position was over Ukraine airspace." The plane was supposed to land in Kuala Lampur at 6:10 a.m.

In a statement given to ABC News from the Foreign Ministry in Kiev, it stated, "A large passenger aircraft Boeing 777, performing a flight between Amsterdam and Kuala Lumpur, was shot down in the eastern part of Ukraine. According to the General Staff of Ukrainian Armed Forces, the airplane was shot down by the Russian Buk missile system as the liner was flying at an altitude of 10,000 meters. Ukraine has no long-range air defense missile systems in this area. The plane was shot down, because the Russian air defense systems was affording protection to Russian mercenaries and terrorists in this area. Ukraine will present the evidence of Russian military involvement into the Boeing crash."

But this is not the first incident to occur this year with Malaysian Airlines.

Back in early March, another jet vanished on it's way to Beijing. It was carrying 239 people.

ABC News reported that Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman,  tweeted, "On reports of tragic Malaysian plane crash: at this time US do not have any conformation of cause, individuals on plane or any addl details."

It is still unknown the fate of the passengers. Also unknown is if there were any Americans on board.

Malaysia Airlines Plane Shot Down While Over Ukraine


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