The missile that Dutch investigators say brought down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was not picked up by Russian radar monitors because it flew too fast, experts have concluded.
Two independent radar specialists studied Russian radar pictures from July 17, 2014, the night the passenger airliner was shot down over Ukraine. Russia says the absence of any missiles in the images supports its argument that the plane was not shot down from territory held by pro-separatist forces.
Jirko Patist, spokesman for the Dutch prosecution service, said the type of radar used by the Russians filtered out high-speed objects. The type of Buk missile implicated in the shooting down of MH17 flies three times as fast as a passenger jet.
The two experts, who were called in by the Joint Investigation Team on the disaster, had confirmed this version of events, said Patist. ‘If you look at all the evidence our conclusion stands that the Buk missile was fired from the site we identified in 2016.’
Patist said the experts had also discounted alternative scenarios put forward by Russia, such as the suggestion that MH17 could have been shot down by a fighter plane. No other aircraft were detected in the vicinity of the airliner at the time the missile was fired, they concluded.
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