SAN FRANCISCO, CA – July 17, 2014 – More than 50 Ukrainians from San Francisco and the Bay Area gathered before the Consulate General of the Netherlands in San Francisco to mourn the loss of 295 passengers and crew members of Malaysian Flight MH17. The civilian aircraft recently crashed on the territory of the Eastern Ukraine controlled by pro-Russian separatists. According to preliminary information, most of the passengers were citizens of the Netherlands.
The Ukrainian community came to the Consulate with flowers, candles, and messages of condolences for the families of those who lost relatives on Flight MH17. “A great tragedy happened in Ukraine today; almost 300 innocent lost their lives. It seems evident that the plane was shot down by pro-Russia separatists who were using advanced Russian long-range missiles. Putin must take responsibility for putting advanced military weapons into the hands of untrained mercenary thugs.” said Mikola Bilogorskiy, MaydanSF co-founder.
“How many more people have to die for Putin’s nationalist ambitions? The leaders of the EU and the US must pressure President Putin and the Russian government to stop supporting the separatists in Eastern Ukraine. We are grateful to the US for introducing another level of sanctions against Russia, and call upon the European Union to also instate tougher sanctions,” added Iryna Bilokin, MaydanSF organizer, originally from Kyiv, Ukraine.
The Malaysian Boeing 777 airliner was flying over Eastern Ukraine at over 10,000 meters altitude heading from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in the normal civilian air corridor. At local time 4:20 pm contact was lost with the plane. A Russian citizen and one of the leaders of pro-Russian separatists in Eastern Ukraine, Igor Girkin, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Igor_Girkin) stated that they have shot down the airliner because it flew over “their” skies. He coldly called the crush a “birdfall” and posted links to 2 videos depicting the fall of the aircraft. His statements indicate he may have believed that it was a Ukranian Antonov-26 transport, used for both civilian and government flights. (This post is now deleted, see screenshot: https://twitter.com/UKR…/status/489829358358790144/photo/1) and videos: http://maidan-video.com/view/1547 and http://maidan-video.com/view/1546
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has called for an immediate investigation and labeled this a terrorist act. At the altitude of over 10,000 meters the airplane was reachable only by long range anti-aircraft missile systems: either the Russian “Buk” system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buk_missile_system) or the Russian S-300 surface-to-air missile (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S-300_%28missile%29). The terrorists themselves (the “Donetsk People’s Republic”) have boasted that Buk anti-aircraft weapons are a part of their arsenal (https://twitter.com/Dbnmjr/status/489835509808922624/photo/1)
The Ukrainian military does not have that class of weapon anywhere near Donetsk, where the crash took place. The Ukrainian military also has no reason to attack targets in the sky, as the terrorists have no aircraft. This is the third airplane shot down by pro-Russian terrorists over Eastern Ukraine. The terrorists are not allowing rescue teams to access the crash site, and are reported to have seized the “black box” from the crash site themselves.
MaydanSF is a San Francisco Bay Area group of political activist volunteers, not-affiliated with any political parties or organizations. We all care about Ukraine deeply and are helping Ukrainian EuroMaidan movement with protests, fundraising and lobbying for sanctions on corrupt dictators. http://maydansf.com/