Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crashed today in the war zone of Eastern Ukraine’s Donets basin (Donbas). All
295 298 lives were lost. The cause is still unknown, but it appears someone shot it down. Eyewitness accounts say it was breaking apart as it came down from a reported 33,000 feet. The Russian-aligned rebels deny they have the capacity at that altitude, though they can and have hit lower planes, and they may not be telling the truth about their capacities. Ukraine’s military once accidentally shot down a Russian civilian airliner, back in 2001. Russia’s military also has the capacity to do so.
Below is an update of our Eastern Ukraine separatism map with the New York Times’ reported account and map of the flight path superimposed on it. You can also see our full map of the Southeastern Ukraine and Crimea crises here, for a wider geographic reference.