Flight MH17 Was Downed By Russian Buk Missile: Report

A Russian Emergencies Ministry member walks at the site of the Flight MH17 crash, in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine. On Tuesday the Dutch Safety Board confirmed that MH17 was downed by Russian-built Buk missiles. Maxim Zmeyev/REUTERS

Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 was destroyed by a Russian-built missile whilst flying over Ukraine in 2014, the Dutch Safety Board (DSB) has confirmed.

The plane, that was traveling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, was hit by "high-energy objects from outside the aircraft," according to the report, killing all 298 passengers and crew on board.

DSB's chairman, Tjibbe Joustra announced the report's findings at a press conference held on Tuesday at Gilze-Rijen military base in the Netherlands.

He confirmed that MH17 was downed by a Russian-made Buk surface-to-air missile and that the missile was fired from eastern Ukraine. The report notes that Ukrainian authorities failed to close the airspace over the conflict zone, despite there being reason enough to do so.

Joustra said that the DSB had ruled out the possibility that there had been bomb on board the airplane, or that the aircraft had been downed by an air-to-air strike or due to aircraft malfunction. He said fragments from the missile were discovered in the bodies of the three crew members who were killed in the cockpit of the plane. Paint found on the fragments can be linked to Buk missile warheads, The Guardian said.

The Russian manufacturers, Almaz-Antey, who make the Buk missiles, held an alternative press conference also on Tuesday to refute the findings of the DSB report.

The DSB presented its findings to the victims' families before addressing journalists. Investigators said that those on board the plane were likely to have died instantly. "The impact was entirely unexpected, which means that people were barely able to comprehend the situation in which they found themselves. There was hardly any time for a conscious response. The occupants were exposed to extreme factors almost immediately," reads the report.

In the West and in Ukraine, the widely held view is that the missile was fired by Russian-backed rebels, however Russia disputes this argument, pinning responsibility on Ukraine. In August Russia used its veto to block a U.N. resolution that aimed to set up an international tribunal into the downing of MH17.