- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was more than likely hit by an object outside the plane, which caused it to break and crash, the Dutch Safety Board reported Tuesday.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the board didn’t really come up with any new information about the plane crash, except to “definitively state … the plane was shot down.”

Other media outlets say that the board didn’t outright state the plane was shot down — but that drawing that conclusion was obvious.

“The damage observed in the forward section of the aircraft appears to indicate that the aircraft was penetrated by a large number of high-energy objects from outside the aircraft,” the report authors wrote, The Associated Press reported. “It is likely that this damage resulted in a loss of structural integrity of the aircraft, leading to an in-flight break up.”

The board is heading up the international investigation into the Boeing 777 crash that left 298 passengers and crew dead on July 17 over a rebel-held region in Ukraine.

The board also found that the plane did not have any technical failures and that the pilot did not issue a distress call, The Wall Street Journal reported.

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The Wall Street Journal also said it’s still not clear who would have shot down the plane: Ukraine accuses the rebels, backed by Russia, who held the area over which the plane flew. Russia, meanwhile, accused Ukraine’s own military of taking the action.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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