The Kremlin has spoken out against a new report into the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine in 2015.
Released yesterday, the report by independent British investigators Bellingcat said that the flight had been hit by a Buk self-propelled missile launcher from Russia's 53rd Anti Aircraft Missile Brigade stationed in Kursk.
Russian presidential spokesman Dmitri Peskov said on Wednesday he doubted the report was true, the state TASS news agency reported. While a lot of information had emerged from the tragic accident, “most of it is speculative and operates on rumors and manipulated data,” he said.
Using photographs posted online by members of the brigade in 2010, Bellingcat experts claimed they could match the Russian Buk missile launcher to the one photographed in eastern Ukraine on the day of the attack. The match itself was allegedly made using seven unique characteristics on the weapon itself. The launcher was driven from Luhansk across the border to Russia soon after the incident, according the report.
Peskov said that questions on the technical characteristics of the launcher should have been referred to Russia's Defense Ministry.
In October, an ongoing investigation by the Dutch Safety Board also concluded that the jetliner was downed by a Buk anti-aircraft missile from a separatist-controlled area, but did not assign responsibility for the crash.
All 298 people on board Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, were killed in the crash.