Investigators confirm missile that shot down MH17 was from Russian military

An international team of investigators says that detailed analysis of video images has established that the Buk missile that brought down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 nearly four years ago came from a Russia-based military unit.

Wilbert Paulissen, from the Dutch National Police, said on Thursday the missile was from the Russian military’s 53rd anti-aircraft missile brigade based in the Russian city of Kursk.

Mr Paulissen was speaking at a presentation of interim results of the long-running investigation into the downing of flight MH17.

A Malaysian air crash investigator inspects the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17. Source: Reuters/Maxim Zmeyev, file

The passenger jet was headed from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia when it was was blown out of the sky over eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014. All 298 passengers and crew were killed.

Russia has always denied involvement in the downing of the jet.

Australia and other countries are now considering the next steps towards prosecution.


Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said Australia, Belgium, Malaysia, the Netherlands and Ukraine were now “considering options”.

The countries were united to pursue justice for those who lost their lives as well as their loved ones, she said.

“That a sophisticated weapon belonging to the Russian Army was dispatched and used to shoot down a civilian aircraft should be of grave international concern,” Ms Bishop said.

An international team investigating the MH17 crash in Ukraine are appealing for public assistance. Source: AAP

All 298 passengers and crew were killed, including 38 Australians.

Russia has always denied involvement in the downing of the jet.

This year’s federal budget allocated $50.3 million over four years to support the Dutch national prosecution of those responsible for the attack.

The money will meet Australia’s share of the prosecution costs and help family members of the victims to participate in the court proceedings.

– with AAP