The British Government has joined the United States in blaming pro-Russian separatists for the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in Ukraine.
Downing Street said on Friday night it appeared “increasingly likely” that the catastrophe, which claimed the lives of 10 Britons, was the result of a surface-to-air missile fired from near Torez, in territory controlled by rebels seeking closer ties to Moscow.
David Cameron earlier insisted that those responsible for bringing down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine must be “brought to account” amid deepening tensions with Moscow.
The Prime Minister described the catastrophe, in which 298 people were killed, including resort man Glenn Thomas, as an “absolutely appalling, shocking, horrific incident” that “cannot be allowed to stand”.
The response came as the United Nations Security Council approved a statement calling for a “full, thorough and independent international investigation” into the crash.
It comes after US president Barack Obama said separatists had shot down Ukrainian planes in the region, and claimed those actions could not have been carried out without Russian support.
He said: “Set aside what’s happened with respect to the Malaysian airliner, a group of separatists cannot shoot down military transport planes or, they claim, shoot down fighter jets without sophisticated equipment and sophisticated training and that’s coming from Russia.
“We don’t yet know exactly what happened with respect to Malaysia Airlines, although obviously we are beginning to draw some conclusions given the nature of the shot that was fired. There are only certain types of anti-aircraft missiles that can reach up 30,000 ft and shoot down a passenger jet.”