The United States believes that pro-Russian militants who shot down a Malaysian Boeing plane over the Donbas could not do it without the support of Russia.
U.S. State Department spokesperson Marie Harf said this at a briefing on Wednesday, Radio Liberty reported.
“These Russian separatists who we strongly believe fired this missile would not be there operating without the support of [Russian] President [Vladimir] Putin and the Russian government, would not have been trained without the support of President Putin and the Russian government, would not be armed without the support of President Putin and the Russian government,” she said.
“They would not be there doing what they’re doing, period, so they could fire an SA-11 without the support of President Putin and the Russian government. Yes, direct responsibility lays there,” Harf added.
As reported, a Malaysia Airlines passenger plane flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed in eastern Ukraine on July 17. All 298 people on board died.
The Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) released the intercepted recording of conversations between pro-Russian separatists, which show that the plane was shot down by their people.
SBU also said it had evidence that the Buk anti-aircraft missile systems brought for this purpose from Russia had been operated by Russian military experts.
Russia, instead, immediately made statements accusing the Ukrainian Armed Forces of the crash.