'Ukrainian military worker' claims one of his country's fighter jets shot down MH17 after confusing the passenger plane for Russian air force
- Ukrainian military base employee claims MH17 was shot down by air force
- He told a Moscow newspaper the jet was carrying air-to-air missiles
- The unnamed source said the pilot then returned without the missiles
- He claimed the pilot emerged from the cockpit looking 'very frightened'
- The Russia Investigative Committee also gave him a lie detector test
- Russian state investigators say his sensational claims are 'truthful'
A Ukrainian military base employee has made the sensational claim that a one his country's own air force planes shot down Malaysian flight MH17 killing all 298 on board.
The unnamed employee claimed to a Moscow newspaper that a Ukrainian air force Su-25 combat jet took off from an airbase in eastern Dnipropetrovsk carrying air-to-air missiles - and returned without them - on the day the Boeing 777 was shot out of the sky.
The pilot on his return emerged from his cockpit looking frightened, said the source, according to Komsomolskaya Pravda.
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The unidentified official sits with his back to the camera and his face obscured during an interview with three men from Komsomolskaya Pravda, a Russian media outlet
The pilot, named as Captain Vladislav Voloshin, said 'the plane was in the wrong place at the wrong time' evidently having confused the Boeing for a military target, said the source.
'In the second half of the day, roughly an hour before the Boeing was shot down, three fighters took off,' said the source.
'I don't remember the exact hour. One of the jets was equipped with air-to-air missiles. It was a Sukhoi-25.'
Only one plane returned to this air base, he said, and it was the one that previously had the missiles suspended below.
Russia has repeatedly argued that MH17 was downed not by pro-Moscow rebels using a BUK missile system but by a Ukrainian warplane.
The planes were normally deployed to strike at rebel targets in eastern Ukraine, he said, but this time the aircraft had air-to-air missiles fitted.
'They are suspended to a fighter jet only on a special order,' he said. 'Most typically, the commanders didn't order this because such missiles can't be carried in the air for no particular reason.'
Emergency services workers sift through the debris of MH17 in Ukraine the day after it crashed
Wreckage of the downed aircraft smolders in the hours after it crashed in eastern Ukraine
He explained that these missiles had been decommissioned long before but their combat employment was urgently authorized again literally a week before the MH17 accident.
He claimed that the missile would be capable of hitting a plane's fuselage, whether directly or from a distance of 500 meters.
The man said he had gone to the Russian media despite threats from the Ukrainian secret service.
He was against the war in eastern Ukraine, blaming the Kiev authorities for their use of force.
A spokesman for Russia's powerful Investigative Committee later said the official's claims
were truthful, following an interview and lie detector test administered by the committee itself.
He said: 'According to his account, he personally saw the plane piloted by Voloshin armed
with R-60 air-to-air missiles.
'He added there was no need for such weapons during regular air missions of the Ukrainian
Air Forces because the rebel forces had no military aircraft,' RT reported.
Two members of the Ukrainian emergency services collect the body of a victim of MH17
Soon after the horror on 17 July, the Russian Ministry of Defense claimed a Ukrainian Su-25 fighter plane was in the sky close to MH17.
The version is starkly at odds with Ukrainian and Western theories on the downing of the plane.
They have pointed to a ground-fired BUK missile as being responsible.
Russia has also claimed its evidence has not been given due weight by a Dutch-led probe into disaster due to report in 2015.
According to the preliminary information of the DSB, the Boeing was hit by a large number of high-energy objects penetrating the aircraft from outside, but the source of the objects was not found.
The Ukrainian air force has not responded to a request for comment.