Dutch Safety Board issues final report into July 2014
crash of flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur over
Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 brought down by
Russian-made 9M38 Buk missile, report says
Forensic evidence showed missile exploded about a
metre from the cockpit
All 298 people on board were killed, of whom 196 were
All times in BST (one hour ahead of GMT)
By Roland Hughes and Jastinder Khera
All times stated are UK
MH17 report: What we know
We’re now closing our live page on the conclusions of
the Dutch Safety Board into why flight MH17 crashed.
Here’s what we’ve learned:
Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 crashed as a result of a
Russian-made Buk missile, the Dutch Safety Board
The missile hit the front left of the plane causing other
parts break off, killing 298 people
The West and Ukraine say Russian-backed rebels
brought down the Boeing 777 but the report does not
say who fired the missile
Airspace over eastern Ukraine should have been closed,
The report says the three crew members in the cockpit
were instantly killed by the missile explosion
Separately, Russian officials from Almaz-Antey – the state
firm that manufactures Buk missiles – said the evidence
suggested the plane had been shot down by a surface-to-
air Buk missile fired by Ukrainian forces.
We’ve compiled five key findings from the report that you
can read here .
And for all the latest, you can turn to our main article here .
Thanks for following.
The debris – and the reconstruction
Rebuilding the front of the Boeing 777 was a painstaking
task – and involved the recovery of thousands of fragments
over a large area in a war zone.
“Only in rare cases (are) aeroplanes reconstructed after a
crash,” the report says. “Such a process is labour-intensive
‘Dutch Safety Board report sheds light’
Dutch Embassy London
Today’s final report by the #Dutch Safety Board
sheds light on the #MH17 disaster. Read PM Rutte’s
statement here: bit.ly/1L9l3HF
2:57 p.m. – 13 October 2015
Despite the report not apportioning blame, Russian Deputy
Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov has dismissed it as an
“attempt to draw a biased conclusion, to carry out a
He said more attention should have been paid to the
findings of Russian arms manufacturer Almaz-Antey.
The company said experiments it carried out contradict the
conclusion that it was a Buk missile of the kind used by the
Russians that brought the plane down.
It says the missile could have been a model of Buk that is
no longer used by the Russian military but is part of the
Ukrainian military arsenal.
In detail: what investigators say happened
If you have 20 minutes free, here’s the video put together by
Dutch investigators detailing what they say occurred to
If you don’t have 20 minutes to spare, here’s our summary .
And here is the original report
English, that was published today.
What happens next?
Dutch PM Mark Rutte says a criminal investigation “will be
complex and will take a great deal of time” – the report, he
says, will form a large part of the evidence.
The Joint Investigative Team based in the Netherlands said
in a statement that
needs to be examined who had any role in the shooting
down of flight MH17 and what was their intention”.
But, the statement says, finding witnesses and getting them
to make a statement in a safe environment is “not easy”.
What do the separatists say?
BBC producer on the response of pro-Russian fighters in
‘DNR’ rebels have refused all interviews today on
#MH17, say there will be a briefing by ‘DNR’ head
Aleksandr Zakharchenko tomorrow
2:29 p.m. – 13 October 2015
Reaction from Malaysia
There’s been plenty of reaction from Malaysia over the past
In a statement, Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai
said: “Malaysia remains single-minded in our pursuit of
decisive action that will lead to prosecution of the trigger-
Prime Minister Najib Razak said his government would
pursue justice “until those behind this heinous act are made
to pay for their crimes”.
All the latest updates
We’re bringing you all the latest reaction to the Dutch Safety
Board’s report here on this page – if you want a round-up of
what’s been said, you can turn to our main article here .
‘Shot from Russian-occupied territory’
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s press secretary
Порошенко: #MH17 був збитий з території,
окупованої росіянами, з російської зброї.
Прізвища винних мав назвати трибунал, який
1:43 p.m. – 13 October 2015
Poroshenko: #MH17 was shot from Russia-occupied
territory using Russian weapons. Those guilty were to have
been named by the tribunal blocked by Russia.
One man’s hunt into what happened
As well as the Dutch and Russian investigations, a number
of other groups and individuals have conducted their own
inquiries into the disaster.
Chief among them is the Bellingcat investigative group
but here are the words of one Dutch man who tried to get
to the bottom of what happened .
Father hopes death ‘was instant’
The father of British victim Liam Sweeney described a
private briefing for families, held prior to the publication of
the report, as “quite composed”.
I’m going to have to just go away and think
yes, Liam died instantly… because if you think
otherwise, it will hurt forever
Who were the victims?
Most of those who died were from the Netherlands, but
there were others from Malaysia, the UK, the Philippines
and a number of other countries.
Here is what we know about the 298 people who lost their
‘US continues to offer support’
My thoughts remain with family & victims of this
tragic event. US continues to support efforts to hold
accountable those responsible. #MH17
1:47 p.m. – 13 October 2015
What do investigators say happened?
So what exactly did Dutch investigators conclude about
what happened to flight MH17?
Here’s our guide to the main conclusions – the animation
was produced by the Dutch Safety Board.
But what more don’t we know about what happened?
Handily, we have produced this guide for you .
‘Nearer to the truth’
UK Prime Minister
PM: Justice must be done for all of the victims of
#MH17 – today’s report brings us one step closer to
establishing the truth
1:45 p.m. – 13 October 2015
Why was a victim wearing an oxygen mask?
Back in October last year, the then-Foreign Minister of the
Netherlands, Frans Timmermans, said one body was found
at the crash site with an oxygen mask attached . It’s a
comment he later said he regretted, for the upset it caused
This point is addressed in one part of the report ( see page
– but it remains unclear as to who the victim was.
Debris pieced back together
‘It was too dangerous’
Mother of victim speaks to BBC
The mother of one of the MH17 victims has told the BBC
that the plane should have been nowhere near eastern
No-one should have flown there. Not one
aeroplane, because it was too dangerous. We
all could see it on TV – I couldn’t believe it
when I heard they were flying there
Mother of MH17 victim Bryce Fredriksz
‘Persons of interest’
A team of international prosecutors says it has identified
“persons of interest” in the inquiry into who was
responsible for downing flight MH17.
A statement from the Dutch-led team said their independent
findings so far “point in that same direction”, although no
suspects were named.
‘Inquiry biased’ – Russia
Russia has criticised the Dutch Safety Board findings:
Russia regrets that despite its efforts to
organise an MH17 probe, there are obvious
attempts to carry out a political order… the
investigation was biased
Russian deputy foreign minister
US: ‘Important milestone’
The White House has welcomed the report as an “important
milestone in the effort to hold accountable those
responsible” for the disaster.
The United States will fully support all efforts
to bring to justice those responsible. Our
assessment is unchanged – MH17 was shot
down by a surface-to-air missile fired from
separatist-controlled territory in eastern
US National Security Council spokesman
Ukraine ‘did all it could’
More from Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Henadiy Zubko.
Asked why Ukraine had not closed its airspace, he says
Kiev observed all recommendations from the International
Civil Aviation Organisation and that Ukraine was “gradually
closing airspace” up to 9,750 metres (six miles).
He said the government had done all it could to prevent
such a tragedy.
(From BBC Monitoring)
‘This cannot be’
Malaysia’s Youth and Sports Minister tweets:
Someone shot our plane from the sky, murdered
hundreds of people and may get away with it? This
cannot be. #MH17
11:59 a.m. – 13 October 2015
Where missile exploded
A video released by the Dutch Safety Board
shows where the missile exploded. It says a “sound peak”
captured on three microphones in the cockpit was
consistent with an explosion.
Fragments of the missile were found in the bodies of crew
members inside the cockpit.
Separatists ‘didn’t have Buk missile system’
Eduard Basurin, deputy defence minister of the self-
proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic in eastern Ukraine,
has insisted that separatists did not have a Buk missile
system at the time MH17 was shot down, Russia’s Tass
news agency reports. (From BBC Monitoring)
Investigators have rebuilt much of the cockpit of MH17, that
bore the brunt of the missile explosion only three metres
More on what passengers experienced
BBC Europe producer tweets:
MH17 report says occupants had hardly any time for
12:31 p.m. – 13 October 2015
Debris reveals damage
Ukraine ‘agrees with findings’
Ukraine’s own MH17 investigation has reached the same
conclusion as the Dutch Safety Board, Ukrainian Deputy
Prime Minister Henadiy Zubko has told a news conference.
It also found that the missile was fired from the rebel-held
town of Snizhne. (From BBC Monitoring)
‘Lessons to be learned’
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, in a press conference,
says a number of lessons can be drawn from the MH17
Among them, he says, is “better transparency and co-
ordination of passenger lists”. There was criticism over why
it took so long to confirm who was on board the flight when
it was hit.
Victims’ suffering ‘cannot be ruled out’
Despite families saying they were told victims’ suffering
was “out of the question”, the Dutch Safety Board
(DSB) report says it “cannot be ruled out that some
occupants remained conscious for some time during the
one to one-and-a-half minutes for which the crash
lasted”. Nonetheless, the DSB deems it unlikely they were
able to comprehend what was happening.The report states
that occupants were affected by the missile’s impact in
different ways, which was partly determined by their
location in the airplane when the warhead detonated.
The impact was immediately fatal only to the people in the
The Dutch Safety Board has produced a video detailing
what it says happened to flight MH17 – you can watch it
Priority: Find those responsible
Dutch PM Mark Rutte says the priority now is “tracing and
prosecuting the perpetrators”.
He says prosecutors will say more on this later in the day.
Full report published online
Chairman Tjibbe Joustra has just completed
his presentation of the Dutch Safety Board’s final report on
the cause of the flight MH17 crash. Find the full report
What we know
Flight MH17 was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur
and was travelling over the conflict-hit region of eastern
Ukraine on 17 July 2014 when it came down. Click here to
read more on what we know about the events of that day
and here for more information about the victims.
Launch location not determined
Calculations show that the missile was launched
somewhere in an area of 320 sq km in eastern Ukraine, Mr
Joustra says. However, additional investigations
are needed to confirm the launch location.
More protection needed
Mr Joustra’s presentation has now finished. He said that
one of its conclusions was that states involved in civil
conflict must do more to protect civil aviation.
Downing ‘was not air-to-air attack’
Press conference coverage
Click here to watch live coverage of the press conference
being given by the Dutch Safety Board.
Sixteen other aircraft shot down
More planes had been shot down in east Ukraine in the
weeks before the MH17 crash, investigators say.
Three other operators in the area
Lower levels of Ukrainian airspace were restricted, but flight
MH17 was above that height when it was shot down, says
Mr Joustra. In that same time three other flight operators
were in the area, he says.
Definitely a BUK missle
Dutch investigators found that it was definitely a
BUK missile that hit flight MH17. It hit the front of the plane
from the left and was launched from somewhere in an area
of 320 sq km in Eastern Ukraine, Mr Joustra says.
Should airspace have been closed?
Mr Joustra says that in the opinion of the Dutch Safety
Board, there was sufficient reason to close airspace above
eastern Ukraine as a precaution at the time. Ukrainian
authorities did not do so, he says.
Investigators presenting findings
Dutch Safety Board chairman Tjibbe Joustra is now
outlining the main findings of the report to journalists.
Reporters have been shown a partial reconstruction of the
plane using actual wreckage from the plane:
Russians contest Dutch findings
Meanwhile the Russian state-sponsored television network,
Russia Today, continues to release more details on the
report by Russian missile manufacturers Almaz-
Antey, contesting the findings of the Dutch report. This
tweet shows an experiment conducted by the company with
BUK missiles to prove their findings.
First copies of the report given to relatives
Families of the victims have received the first copies of the
Dutch report, the BBC’s Anna Holligan reports:
Victims suffering ‘out of the question’
Robby Oehlers, whose niece Daisy died in the crash, also
spoke to the BBC and said relatives were shown an
animation “about how the plane was downed, the
reconstruction of the plane; they told us if the people inside
felt anything, had any notion of what was happening, that
was out of the question.”
Still no-one to blame
Mr Sweeney also said that, as expected, the report did not
say anything new about who was to blame. For that families
would have to wait for the criminal report which will be
released next year.
‘Relief’ for families
Mr Sweeney also told the BBC that it was a relief to hear
that it was unlikely that passengers had suffered. “We can’t
be 100% certain but we think that was the case. We have to
think they didn’t suffer,” he said.
Cockpit ‘hit first’
Barry Sweeney, whose son Liam died in the crash, said that
investigators told families that it was a BUK missile that hit
the plane. The cockpit was hit first and and broke off from
the rest of the plane, he told the BBC’s Anna Holligan.
Russians release own report
Meanwhile in Moscow this morning, Russian arms
manufacturer Almaz-Antey presented the results of its own
Shaun Walker from The Guardian was at Almaz-Antey’s
press conference where it said it had conducted an
experiment on 7 October with Russian-
made BUK missiles. The company says that if it was a BUK
missle that hit the plane, it must have
been a 9M38 missile and that only Ukraine has these.
First details of report
A relative at the presentation has given the BBC more
details of the findings:
‘No chance those on board felt anything’
The BBC’s Anna Holligan has the following from a relative
who was in the briefing:
BREAKING #MH17 was hit by BUK missile. 0%
chance people on board felt anything. DSB did not
mention location missile was fired from #Ukraine
9:42 a.m. – 13 October 2015
‘Objects from outside the aircraft’
Preliminary findings presented in September 2014 said the
plane was hit by “high-energy objects from outside the
aircraft”, fuelling speculation that a surface-to-air missile
The victims who died in the crash
Those killed in the crash included 283 passengers – of
which 80 were children – and 15 crew members. The
country mourning the biggest number of victims is the
Netherlands, followed by Malaysia and Australia. Read our
piece for more on the victims.
What we know
The flight was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur
and was travelling over the conflict-hit region of eastern
Ukraine on 17 July 2014 when it came down. Click here to
read more on what we know about the events of that day.
Welcome to the BBC’s live coverage as Dutch authorities
release the findings of their report into the MH17 plane
crash over Ukraine, in which 298 people died. The Dutch
Safety Board will present its findings first to victims’
families and relatives and then to journalists at the Gilze-
Rijen military base in the Netherlands.