Malaysia Airlines Passenger Jet Shot Down Over Ukraine, 295 Dead

According to the Russian news agency Interfax, a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet carrying 295 passengers and crew was shot down today along the border between Ukraine and Russia. Interfax also cites Ukraine's Interior Ministry advisor as saying all aboard the plane—including 23 American citizens—have died.

The plane—which you see in the photo above taking off from LAX in 2012—was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it was shot down at about 32,000 feet. Reuters is reporting that the plane did not enter Russian airspace when expected and crashed, though Ukraine maintains that the plane was taken down by a missile. Malaysia Airlines has not yet confirmed what would be one of the gravest disasters in aviation history, though the airline has confirmed that it lost contact with the plane at 2:15 local time. That said, a Reuters reporter in Eastern Ukraine has spotted the burning wreckage along with "bodies on the ground." An official with the Russian Emergency Ministry also says that at least 100 bodies are visible on the ground in a roughly 10 mile radius.

Unsurprisingly, no one has yet accepted responsibility for the plane reportedly being shot down, and both Ukraine and Russia are pinning the disaster on the other. Ukraine's president Petro Poroshenko has said that his country's military "did not take action against airborne targets." Pro-Russian forces in Ukraine similarly deny responsibility, stating that they do not possess the type of missile that is alleged to have brought the jet down. Separatist leader Alexander Borodai followed that up by laying blame at the feet of the Ukrainians.

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