The highest-ranking Russian official identified as a person of interest in the criminal investigation into the 2014 shootdown of MH17 has been named as top FSB Colonel General Andrey Ivanovich Burlaka. Bellingcat reports that the general oversaw the movement of weapons from Russia to Ukraine, and he would have had to authorize the transfer of the Russian Buk missile launcher that downed the Malaysia Airlines passenger jet in July 2014. A Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team had appealed for help in identifying the official after his voice was heard in telephone intercepts from the days before the shootdown. Bellingcat has identified him as Burlaka—the Chief of the Operational Staff of the FSB’s Border Service and the first deputy to the head of the Border Service of FSB. He’s one of the most senior officers in the FSB, two positions removed from the director, via his direct boss, Russian Army General Vladimir Kulishov. Flight 17 was shot down while flying over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.
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