Malaysia’s prime minister believes the preliminary inquiry report into the loss of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 supports the suggestion of a missile strike on the Boeing 777.
The Dutch Safety Board’s initial findings indicate that the aircraft disintegrated as a result of its losing structural integrity after being peppered with multiple high-velocity fragments.
While the inquiry does not specify the origin of these fragments, Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak says: “This leads to the strong suspicion that a surface-to-air missile brought MH17 down.”
But he adds that further investigative work is required “before we can be certain”.
Razak points out that the aircraft had been operating in unrestricted airspace, under the guidance of local air traffic control, following a cleared route and flying at its assigned altitude.
“The aircraft was fully airworthy, with no reported faults, and the crew acted properly,” he says.
Razak says the investigation team must be granted “full and unfettered” access to the crash site in eastern Ukraine in order to complete the inquiry and “establish the truth”.