Four months after Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down over rebel-held eastern Ukraine, newly obtained video footage shows how close the burning passenger jet came to hitting village homes and suggests that residents first assumed it was a Ukrainian military plane that had been struck.
The amateur footage, filmed by a resident of Hrabove, shows people reacting in alarm as wreckage blazes only a few meters away from their homes on the afternoon of July 17.
The video is perhaps the first taken immediately after the plane came down.
The ultimate cause of the MH17 disaster is the subject of major diplomatic disputes. Ukraine and Western government say Russia-backed separatist fighters fired the rockets that felled the plane, while state-run television in Moscow over the weekend produced evidence it claims places blame with Ukraine’s air force.
All 298 people aboard the Boeing 777 flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur were killed when it was shot down over a rebel-held area. Charred remains of the aircraft are scattered around fields over an area of 20 square kilometers (8 square miles).