‘We shot down MH17 thinking it was Ukrainian cargo plane’: says pro-Russian

The rebel who reportedly admitted to Corriere della Sera that pro-Russian forces shot down MH17 is pictured patrolling the morgue train containing victims’ bodies earlier this week

A pro-Russian separatist fighting in eastern Ukraine has admitted rebel forces shot down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, it has been claimed.

The militant, who has not been identified, reportedly said fighters blasted the Boeing 777 out of the sky – killing all 298 people on board – after mistaking it for a Ukrainian government cargo plane.

He said the rebels only realised their mistake when they began searching the crash site for the parachutes of military crew who may have bailed out the aircraft, only to find the bodies of children.

The rebel – who worked locally as a miner before joining pro-Russian separatists – told a reporter for Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera that officers initially told him MH17 was a government plane.

“We shot down a Kiev plane, our superiors told us. We thought we were looking for baled-out Ukrainian pilots but instead we found dead civilians,” he was quoted as saying…

Note: The Corriere Della Sera article is in English.