Archive for July 18th, 2014

Russia Denies Role in Downing of Airliner

New York Times
JULY 18, 2014

GRABOVO, Ukraine — As rescue teams slowly converged on the grisly scene of Thursday’s downing of a Malaysia Airlines jet, the Russian defense ministry sharply denied any involvement in the missile strike that Ukrainian officials said ripped the Boeing 777 from the sky and many began openly questioning why the airline had chosen to fly a civilian aircraft over a combat zone.

The crash site was still unsecured by midday Friday, raising questions about who controlled the flight data recorder, cockpit voice recorder and other onboard devices that will help determine exactly how the crash occurred. Rebel spokesmen said they had recovered most of the devices, but it was unclear when and to whom they would turn them over for investigation. Read the rest of this entry »


Some other Asian carriers abandoned Ukraine airspace months ago

The Malay Mail Online
July 18, 2014

SEOUL, July 18 ― The Malaysian airliner apparently shot down over rebel-held eastern Ukraine was flying over airspace that a number of other Asian carriers abandoned months ago because of security concerns.

South Korea’s two main airlines, Korean Air and Asiana, as well as Australia’s Qantas said they all rerouted flights from as early as the beginning of March when Russian troops moved into Crimea.

“We stopped flying over Ukraine because of safety concerns,” Asiana spokeswoman Lee Hyo-Min said.

Korean Air re-routed its flights 250 kilometres (160 miles) south of Ukraine “due to the political unrest in the region”, an official for the carrier told AFP.

A Qantas spokeswoman said its London to Dubai service used to fly over Ukraine, but the route was changed “several months ago”.

Quizzed as to why Malaysia Airlines had not taken similar precautions, Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said earlier today that international air authorities had deemed the flight path secure. Read the rest of this entry »


Ukrainian daily publishes transcript of rebels discussing MH17

The Malaysian Insider
18 July 2014

A Ukrainian daily has published what it said was recordings of phone conversations, firstly between Russian intelligence officers and secondly between separatist commanders, about a downed passenger jet believed to be the crashed flight MH17.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 carrying 298 people on board from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur had crashed in a war-zone in Ukraine yesterday, 50km from Russian border.

US intelligence officials say a missile struck the Boeing 777 jet but no one has claimed responsibility in the area where pro-Russian rebels are fighting Ukrainian forces.

The recordings have not been independently verified, The Daily Mail reported on its online portal.

In the first, Igor Bezler, who the Ukrainians claim is a Russian intelligence officer and leading commander of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, tells a commander: “We have just shot down a plane about ‘30 minutes ago’.”

In the second, more detailed recording, a rebel nicknamed “Major” says the Malaysian Airlines jet was shot down by “Cossacks from the Chernukhino roadblock” adding: “It is definitely a civilian plane… there was a lot of people on board.”

“Major” tells a comrade with the codename “Greek” it was “100% a passenger (civilian) aircraft”. Read the rest of this entry »

1 Comment

MH 17 disaster – fully supports Najib’s call for “swift justice” against perpetrators of crime against humanity who blew the Malaysian Airlines plane out of the sky and murdered 298 passengers/crew on board

All Malaysians are united as one people behind the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and fully back his call for “swift justice” against the perpetrators of the crime against humanity who blew MH 17 civilian aircraft out of the sky in Ukranian airspace last night and murdered 298 passengers and crew on board in cold blood.

Before the country has recovered from the disaster of the 132-day disappearance of MH 370 Boeing 777 jet with 239 passengers/crew on board on March 8, despite the largest and longest multi-national air, land, sea and sub-sea search, Malaysians reel with incredulity, shock and grief at another major air disaster to hit the country involving another Boeing 777 jet in less than five months.

Malaysia is in mourning today with Malaysians totally distraught at the senseless and criminal snuffing out of innocent lives, including three infants, as a result of the unspeakable crime against humanity against MH 17 in Ukraine.

All Malaysians extend the deepest condolences to the bereaved families, relatives and friends of the 298 passengers/crew of MH 17. Read the rest of this entry »


Malaysia Airlines passenger jet shot down over Ukraine, 298 dead
July 17, 2014

A Malaysia Airlines passenger plane with 298 aboard was shot down by a surface-to-air missile in Ukraine near the Russian border a day after a Ukrainian military jet was downed, Fox News has confirmed.

The Boeing 777 bound for Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam was shot down at cruising altitude about 35 miles from the border, according to Anton Gerashenko, an adviser to Ukraine’s Interior Minister. He said all passengers and crew members were killed. A Reuters correspondent near the scene reported seeing burning wreckage and bodies strewn across a nine-mile debris field. A Ukrainian Emergency official told the news agency body parts and at least 100 bodies were seen in the area.

Although Malaysia Airlines originally said there were 280 passengers and a crew of 15 aboard the flight, it later upped the number of passengers to 283 to account for three infants.

The flight manifest reportedly included the names of 23 Americans, though State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said at a briefing Thursday, “we don’t have any additional details at this point on American citizens” aboard the plane. Read the rest of this entry »


Investigation Into Malaysia Airlines Crash in Ukraine Faces Daunting Challenges

Andy Pasztor And Jon Ostrower
Wall Street Journal
July 17, 2014

Investigators looking into the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 face a series of unusually daunting challenges—from accessing the crash scene in the first place to taking possession of the plane’s “black boxes”—that raise questions about whether any probe will be widely considered credible.

The crash site is in territory held by rebels, not controlled by the central government in Kiev. It is unclear the extent of cooperation between the two over access for international investigators who typically flock to the scene, sometimes within hours of a plane going down on land.

Ukraine officials have also said the rebels have taken possession of the plane’s data and cockpit recorders, or black boxes, complicating any attempt by international investigators to take possession of this equipment—one of the most important elements of any aircraft crash probe. Read the rest of this entry »

No Comments

Pakatan leaders express shock, pray for those on board flight MH17

The Malaysian Insider
18 July 2014

Pakatan Rakyat leaders expressed their shock over reports that a Malaysia Airlines flight had crashed late last night near the Ukraine-Russia border, with Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim offering prayers for all on board.

The opposition leader said on Twitter that he was still awaiting confirmation about the tragedy and was praying for the passengers and crew of flight MH17.

“MH17, Ya Allah. Another tragedy. Awaiting details, pray for safety,” he tweeted.

Flight MH17, en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, was believed to have been shot down over eastern Ukraine by pro-Russian militants on Thursday, killing all 295 people aboard.

MAS has confirmed that Ukraine air traffic control lost contact with flight MH17 at 10.15pm local time. Read the rest of this entry »

No Comments

Six questions about: The MH17 crash in Ukraine

By Zurairi AR
The Malay Mail Online
July 18, 2014

KUALA LUMPUR, July 18 ― Malaysians woke up today to an eerily familiar feeling of tragedy: another one of the nation’s airplanes has gone down and, with it, hundreds of civilian lives.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was due to touch down in Kuala Lumpur at 6.10am today from Amsterdam, but it never made it home, crashing instead near the strife-torn border of Ukraine and Russia.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak described it aptly when he addressed the media at the 4am, saying this was “a tragic day in an already tragic year”, following the disappearance of Beijing-bound MH370 five months ago.

Malaysia still could not verify independently the reason behind the plane’s crash, but here is what we know so far: Read the rest of this entry »

1 Comment

Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

By Ashley Fantz, CNN
July 17, 2014

(CNN) — A Malaysia Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, has crashed in eastern Ukraine, Russian news agency Interfax reported Thursday.

Malaysia Airlines confirmed that it lost contact with Flight 17 and that the plane’s last known position was over Ukrainian airspace, the airline said on Twitter.

The aircraft was “shot down” over Ukraine by “terrorists” operating a Buk surface-to-air missile system, according to the Facebook page of Anton Gerashchenko, adviser to the Ukrainian Interior Ministry. There were 280 passengers killed as well as 15 crew members, Gerashchenko’s post reads.

“We do not exclude that the plane was shot down and confirm that the Ukraine Armed Forces did not fire at any targets in the sky,” Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said, according to his website. Read the rest of this entry »