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MH17 Passenger Apparently Took Extraordinary Photo As He Boarded

17/07/2014 17:56 | Updated 18 July 2014

This extraordinary image apparently shows the moment a passenger boarding the crashed MH17 flight, saying: "If it disappears, this is what it looks like."

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  • Almost 300 people have died including up to 10 Britons after a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet was apparently shot down near the Russia - Ukraine border.

    Flight MH17 - a Boeing 777-200ER travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur - was in transit over the war-torn region when it disappeared from radar screens.

    Cor Pan, who describes himself as self-employed and a resident of Volendam in North Holland, posted the image earlier today shortly before the flight's scheduled takeoff.

    The data on Facebook suggests it is genuine - confirming it was taken at Schiphol Airport near Amsterdam and showing it was taken shortly before the flight took off at 12:15pm local time - 11.15am UK time.

    mh17 passenger

    Cor Pan posted this image that suggested he was about to board MH17 before it took off from The Netherlands. It says: "If it disappears, this is what it looks like'

    Friends initially posted, wishing him a good holiday.

    But when news of the crash emerged, they began frantically posting and asking whether his flight was the one that had gone down and trying to confirm his flight number.

    As this story went live, people were posting 'Rest in Peace' in Dutch.

    A plane spotter also tweeted an image of what he said was a photo of the plane taking off.

    People took to Twitter, claiming she knew people aboard the flight, describing it as "heartbreaking".

    MH17 Malaysia Airline Plane

    07/25/2014 11:29 PM EDT

    Document: EU Extends Russia Sanctions

    A document shows that EU sanctions ar targeting Russian businesses, the AP reports:

    A European Union document shows that among those targeted by the EU-wide asset freeze and travel ban are Alexander Bortnikov, head of the Russian Federal Security.

    Also targeted is Sergei Beseda, head of the FSB service that oversees international operations and intelligence activity.

    Read the full story here.

    07/25/2014 5:21 PM EDT

    AP Journalists Saw Rebels With BUK Missiles Hours Before MH17 Crashed

    Associated Press journalists in Ukraine saw a BUK missile system -- the type that the US says downed Flight MH17 -- in rebel hands just hours before the plane was shot down, the news agency says in detailed account of the day's events. AP says that while the rebels officially deny responsibility, "the denials are increasingly challenged by accounts of residents, the observations of journalists on the ground, and the statements of one rebel official." Further, one rebel official told AP that they were behind the plane tragedy.

    More from the AP story:

    A highly placed rebel, speaking to the AP this week, admitted that rebels were responsible. He said a unit based in the hometown of ousted President Viktor Yanukovych, made up of both Russians and Ukrainians, was involved in the firing of an SA-11 from near Snizhne. The rebel, who has direct access to the inner circle of the insurgent leadership in Donetsk, said that he could not be named because he was contradicting the rebels' official line.

    The rebels believed they were targeting a Ukrainian military plane, this person said. Instead, they hit the passenger jet flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. All 298 people aboard were killed.

    Read the full account here.

    07/25/2014 2:59 PM EDT

    White House: Russia 'Culpable' For Downed Jet

    In a briefing on Friday, the White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said there has been a "steady flow" of weapons from Russia into Ukraine, and emphasized the position that Russia played a role in the shooting down of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine, the Wall Street Journal's Marketwatch reports.

    The Pentagon said on Friday that the transfer of missile systems from Russia to separatists in Ukraine appeared to be imminent. On Thursday, the U.S. claimed that Russia had fired on Ukrainian military positions.

    07/25/2014 1:54 PM EDT

    Ukrainian Security Release Tape Of Rebels Allegedly Discussing MH17

    Ukraine's security service, SBU, on Friday released a recording it said was of a phone call between pro-Russian separatists discussing a plane overhead, minutes before the Malaysian Airlines jet was shot down over east Ukraine. “I see… Roger... Report it upstairs,” the rebel commander says, according to a translation.

    Writing for Mashable, Christopher Miller notes that the recording has not been authenticated and the commander "stops short of giving the order to shoot down Flight 17," however the implication is clearly to build a case that the rebels shot down the plane.

    07/25/2014 1:14 PM EDT

    Russia Accuses U.S. Of 'Smear Campaign' Over Ukraine

    Responding to U.S. officials assertion that Russia was firing artillery on Ukrainian military positions across the border, Russia on Friday countered by calling the claim a baseless "smear campaign,"AFP reports.

    A statement from the Russian foreign ministry said, "Due to the smear campaign against us that the US Administration has begun... we reject the unfounded public insinuations that US deputy State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf is spreading on a daily basis," adding that Harf has used "a basketful of these anti-Russian cliches," to influence perceptions of Russia. The statement refuted the U.S. State Departments claim on Russia targeting Ukraine military, saying "There are no facts or specifics about these falsehoods."

    More from AFP.

    -- Andrew Hart

    07/25/2014 1:06 PM EDT

    U.S. Ambassador: 15,000 Russian Troops At Border

    07/25/2014 12:58 PM EDT

    More On The Remarks Out Of The Pentagon

    Reuters reports:

    The Pentagon said on Friday the transfer of heavy caliber multiple launch rocket systems from

    Russia to Ukrainian separatists appeared to be imminent, with the arms close enough to the border they could be handed over "potentially today."

    "We have indications that the Russians intend to supply heavier and more sophisticated multiple launch rocket systems in the very near future," said Army Colonel Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, adding that the weapons were in the over-200mm range.

    Warren indicated the weapons had been seen getting closer to the border and the Pentagon believed a transfer was imminent and "potentially today."

    "We believe that they are able to transfer this equipment at any time, at any moment," he said.

    07/25/2014 12:45 PM EDT

    Pentagon Says Russia Is Readying Weapons For Transfer To Ukraine Rebels

    07/25/2014 11:34 AM EDT

    Australia To Send 100 Additional Police and Personnel To Secure Crash Site

    Reuters reports:

    (Reuters) - Australia will send 100 additional police and some defense force personnel to Europe to join a planned Dutch-led international security force to secure the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crash site, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said on Friday.

    The Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers, some of whom will be armed, will join a contingent of 90 AFP officers already in London waiting for a deal with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to be approved by Ukraine's parliament.

    "This is a humanitarian mission, with a clear and simple objective," Abbott told reporters. "I expect the operation on the ground in Ukraine, should the deployment go ahead, to last no longer than a few weeks."

    Read the full story here.

    07/25/2014 11:03 AM EDT

    Russian Newspaper Runs Front Page Apology For MH17

    A leading Russian newspaper has issued an apology on its front page, asking for forgiveness from the people of the Netherlands who lost their loved ones in the Malaysian Airlines plane crash. The front page of Novaya Gazeta on Friday featured the words "Vergeef ons, Nederlands" (Forgive Us, Netherlands) in bold above a heartbreaking image of the line of hearses carrying MH17 victim's bodies.

    Read the full story on the Huffington Post here.

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