Russia’s air accident investigation agency has identified the Pulkovo Airlines Tupolev Tu-154 which crashed near the Ukrainian city of Donetsk today.

The Interstate Aviation Committee (MAK) confirms the aircraft as a Tu-154M bearing the registration RA-85185.

Flight's fleet database ACAS shows that the aircraft is a 15-year old example owned by the airline.

MAK says it has dispatched a team of air accident specialists to the crash site. The tri-jet had been operating a service from the Russian Black Sea port of Anapa to St Petersburg, Pulkovo’s home base.

No survivors have been reported from among 171 occupants said to have been on board.