On September 17, the Russian Defense Ministry held a press briefing revealing new details on the crash of the Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 in eastern Ukraine in 2014. The press briefing was held by Major General Igor Konashenkov, a spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, and Head of Missile Artillery Chief Directorate Lieutenant General Nikolay Parshin.
Main points provided:
- Serial numbers found on the missile fragments showcased by the Joint Investigation Team, led by the Netherlands, allow to identify when the missile was produced and to which unit it was supplied. The missile was received by an air defense unit in western Ukraine in 1986. Now this unit is known as the 223 anti-aircraft missile regiment of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. It has participated in the conflict in eastern Ukraine in 2014.
- The video used by Bellingcat and the MSM to allege that the Buk launcher involved in the MH17 incident originated from Russia is fake.
- The radio communications intercepted in 2016 allow to suggest that at least a part of Ukrainian military officers is aware that the MH17 was shot down by the Ukrainian military.
Serial numbers of the missile
The Russian military traced the Buk missile [9M38 missile], which shot down the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine in 2014, using serial numbers found on missile fragments showcased by an international team of investigators led by the Netherlands.
Using the serial number of the nozzle cluster 9D13105000 No. 8-30-113 and the engine of the missile 9D131 with the serial number 8869032, the Russian military identified this missile as one produced by the Dolgoprudny plant – a Soviet/Russian designer and mass producer of surface-to-air missiles located in the city of Dolgoprudny, Moscow Oblast.
The military said that the documentation for the aforementioned missile is still stored at the plant – the missile with the aforementioned engine and nozzle cluster has the manufacturning serial number of 8868720.
According to the provided documents, the nozzle cluster was installed in the missile on December 24, 1986. The engine was installed to the missile on the same day.
The nozzle cluster:
A part of the documents showing confirming the installation of the engine and the nozzle cluster to the Buk missile [9M38] with the serial number of 8868720:
HINT: Additional details on the manufacturning serial number 8868720: 8 – produced at Dolgoprudny plant; 86 – year 1986; 8720 – an unique number of the missile.
The manufacturing serial number allowed the Russian Defense Ministry to get the serial number of the assembled missile: 886847379. On December 29, 1986, this missile was sent by rail to the military unit 20152 of the USSR Armed Forces.
The military unit 20152, which received the missile, is 221 anti-aircraft missile brigade then located in the town of Terebovlya in the western part of Ukraine. After the collapse of the USSR, by the decree of the president of Ukraine this unit was renamed into 223 anti-aircraft missile regiment.
Now, 223 anti-aircraft missile regiment is located in the city of Stryi of the Lviv region. The regiment has Buk missile systems and has particiapted in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
The Russian side provided this information to the international team of investigators led by the Netherlands.
The Russian side also studied video footage used by the UK-based group Bellingcat and then international investigators to allege that the Buk launcher involved in the incident was transported from Russia and was belonging to the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade of the Russian Armed Forces. During the press briefing, the ministry of defense said that the footage had been manipulated (start 12:46-18:19):
According to the provided study, the video includes multiple inconsistencies and cannot be used as a proof of anything. Major General Konashenkov pointed out that this video is an attempt to manipulate the international investigation.
Intercepted radio communications
The Russian side also provided what it called a record of intercepted communications of Ukrainian military servicemen discussing, in 2016, the risk of flying through restricted airspace over Ukraine. The provided audio includes a convesation of two persons who complian about a chaos within Ukrainian airspace. One of the persons says that they will get “another Malaysian Boeing” if the situation does not improve (19:18-21:04).
The conversation was recorded in 2016 in the Odessa Region of Ukraine.
One of the persons on the record was identified as Col. Ruslan Grinchak, who serves in a brigade responsible for radar control of the Ukrainian airspace. The Russian Defense Ministry pointed out that his unit tracked the MH17 flight in 2014, so he may have information which is not publicly available.