New evidence suggests that the Buk missile system that shot down Malysia Airlines Flight 17 belonged to Russia, and Russian soliders were most likely the ones operating it. Local citizens in Russia’s Belgorod region posted videos in June of a Buk missile system that has been identified as the same one used to down the July 17 flight, killing 298. There are certain clear markers, such as identification numbers and turret designs, that make it possible to match the specific Buk missile system. It is also believed that the specific Russian brigade that likely operated it can be identified. The 53rd brigade, part of the Russian Protivo Vozdushnaya Oborona (PVO), or Anti-Aircraft Defense troops, was also successfully tracked through videos and photos. The U.S. intelligence community has suspected that it was pro-Russian separatists, rather than official Russian forces, that fired the missile.
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