According to Fox News and the The Associated Press, Malaysian Airlines Flight 17, which originated in Amsterdam and was flying toward Kuala Lumpur earlier today (July 17) aboard a Boeing 777.
Reportedly, MH17 carried 295 souls, all of whom are presumed dead.
The rocket battery at this point stems from pro-Russian forces based in Ukraine. From all indications, and according to Anton Gerashenko, an adviser to Ukraine's Interior Minister, said all 280 passengers and 15 crew members were presumed to have been killed.
A Reuters correspondent near the scene reported seeing burning wreckage and bodies strewn across a nine-mile debris field.
Early and unconfirmed reports suggest that pro-Russian unit was responsible for downing the Boeing 777.
A Ukrainian Emergency official told the news agency that body parts and at least 100 bodies were seen in the debris field.
According to retired US Army Lt.Col. Ralph Peters, "It wasn't the separatists, although Russia will try to blame them, or blame the Ukrainians."
The reportedly flight manifest of those reported to be aboard Flight MH17 suggest that at least 23 US citizens were reported aboard the Boeing 777.
COMMENT: Shortly after news spread of the downing of MH Flight 17, all international commercial carriers stopped overflying the Ukraine.
The flight manifest reportedly included the names of 23 Americans, though US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said at a briefing Thursday (July 17), "we don't have any additional details at this point on American citizens" aboard the plane.
"The President of Ukraine on behalf of the state expresses its deepest and most sincere condolences to the families and relatives of those killed in this terrible tragedy," said a statement released by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's office. "Every possible search and rescue effort is being made."
No doubt, in an effort to manipulate the facts, Moscow has already directed that the flight data recorder to transmitted to Moscow.
It appeared to be at least the third aircraft downed in the Ukraine since Monday (July 14), when a Ukrainian An-26 cargo plane was shot down. Late Wednesday, a Ukrainian Su-25 fighter jet crashed, though it could not be confirmed if it was shot down. Just before the Malaysia Airlines plane went down, Russian separatists reportedly boasted of shooting down another Ukrainian cargo aircraft.
Anton Gerashenko, cited earlier, wrote on his Facebook page that Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 was flying at an altitude of 33,000 feet when it was hit. The missile was believed to have been fired from a Russian Buk launcher. A similar launcher was seen by AP journalists near the eastern Ukrainian town of Snizhne earlier Thursday.
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said whether it was intentional or accidental it is an "international incident" when a passenger jet is shot down.
On March 8, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, also a Boeing 777 and carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew on a route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, disappeared somewhere over the Indian Ocean. It has not been found.
This report will be updated as new information becomes available.