Passenger Flight Shot Down in Rebel Territory in Ukraine With 298 Aboard (Updated)

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
July 17 2014 12:00 PM

Passenger Flight Shot Down in Rebel Territory in Ukraine With 298 Aboard (Updated)

rtr3z2b5
Wreckage near Torez, Ukraine.

Photo by Maxim Zmeyev/Reuters

This is being updated as more information becomes available.

A Boeing 777 Malaysia Airlines passenger flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, has crashed near the rebel-held city of Torez in the eastern Ukraine with 298 people aboard. United States officials, including Vice President Joe Biden, say the plane was shot down. A surface-to-air missile is thought to have been responsible, though it isn't yet known who fired it.

Advertisement

An individual in the Ukrainian interior ministry told multiple news outlets that rebels shot down the plane—flight MH17—at an altitude of more than 30,000 feet, but these details are unconfirmed. The president of Ukraine says the country's own armed forces are not responsible for the crash—specifically that they "did not take action against any airborne targets."

A Ukrainian military transport plane was shot down from a height of 21,000 feet in the same region on Monday, and a jet was shot down Wednesday. It isn't clear whether pro-Russia rebels or Russian forces proper were responsible for those attacks, which took place near the Russia-Ukraine border.

Malaysia Airlines says that it lost contact with the plane over Ukrainian airspace. Another one of the company's flights, MH370, disappeared in March and is presumed to have crashed.

For more, read Slate's Joshua Keating on the history of commercial airliners being mistakenly targeted and shot down by military forces.

Correction, July 17, 2014: This post initially misspelled Ukrainian.

Ben Mathis-Lilley edits the Slatest. Follow @Slatest on Twitter.

TODAY IN SLATE

The World

The Budget Disaster that Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

How Movies Like Contagion and Outbreak Distort Our Response to Real Epidemics

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

Everything You Should Know About Today’s Eclipse

An Unscientific Ranking of Really, Really Old German Beers

Education

Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.

Culturebox

The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Can Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu Pull Off One More Louisiana Miracle?

  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 23 2014 11:51 AM It Seems No One Is Rich or Happy: I Looked
  Life
The Eye
Oct. 23 2014 12:48 PM Track Your Bag and Charge Your Phone With This Carry-On Smart Suitcase
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 23 2014 11:33 AM Watch Little Princesses Curse for the Feminist Cause
  Slate Plus
Working
Oct. 23 2014 11:28 AM Slate’s Working Podcast: Episode 2 Transcript Read what David Plotz asked Dr. Meri Kolbrener about her workday.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 23 2014 12:01 PM Who Is Constantine, and Should You Watch His New Show?
  Technology
Technology
Oct. 23 2014 11:45 AM The United States of Reddit  How social media is redrawing our borders. 
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 23 2014 7:30 AM Our Solar System and Galaxy … Seen by an Astronaut
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.