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

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

Politics

The Democrats’ War at Home

How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?

Congress’ Public Shaming of the Secret Service Was Political Grandstanding at Its Best

Michigan’s Tradition of Football “Toughness” Needs to Go—Starting With Coach Hoke

A Plentiful, Renewable Resource That America Keeps Overlooking

Animal manure.

Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10

Politics

Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.

How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.

Building a Better Workplace

You Deserve a Pre-cation

The smartest job perk you’ve never heard of.

Hasbro Is Cracking Down on Scrabble Players Who Turn Its Official Word List Into Popular Apps

The Ludicrous Claims You’ll Hear at This Company’s “Egg Freezing Parties”

  News & Politics
Politics
Sept. 30 2014 9:33 PM Political Theater With a Purpose Darrell Issa’s public shaming of the head of the Secret Service was congressional grandstanding at its best.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 1 2014 8:34 AM Going Private To undertake a massively ambitious energy project, you don’t need the government anymore.
  Life
The Eye
Oct. 1 2014 9:26 AM These Lego Masterpieces Capture the Fear and Humor of the “Dark” Side
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 30 2014 12:34 PM Parents, Get Your Teenage Daughters the IUD
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 30 2014 3:21 PM Meet Jordan Weissmann Five questions with Slate’s senior business and economics correspondent.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 1 2014 8:46 AM The Vintage eBay Find I Wore to My Sentencing
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 1 2014 10:27 AM 3,000 French Scientists Are Marching to Demand More Research Funding
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 1 2014 7:30 AM Say Hello to Our Quasi-Moon, 2014 OL339
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 30 2014 5:54 PM Goodbye, Tough Guy It’s time for Michigan to fire its toughness-obsessed coach, Brady Hoke.