MOSCOW, August 1 (RIA Novosti) – The Russian Defense Ministry said on Friday that satellite imagery of the Malaysian Boeing crash site that Kiev used to demonstrate the absence of its air defense systems in the area of the disaster "are absolutely implausible."
In the detailed analysis of Russian and Ukrainian satellite imagery, the ministry showed that Kiev’s images were made later than Moscow’s.
“Based on the data provided by Russian space surveillance one can deduce that Ukraine does not own the revealing information,” the ministry said, adding that the “quality [of the images], as well as the SBU’s arguments allegedly proving Russia’s involvement are absolutely implausible.”
According to the Russian space surveillance system, Ukraine’s Sich-1 and Sich-2 satellites were in another location at the time when the images were allegedly made.
“At the time specified in the images the American electro-optical reconnaissance satellite of the Key Hole series was flying over the crash site area, so the source of the images of the Ukrainian Security Service is obvious,” the statement reads.
“Apparently, the reason the true owners of these images have not put their names to these publications is to make sure the myth of their mighty space intelligence not disrupted,” the ministry said.
On July 30, head of the Ukrainian Security Service Vitaly Naida claimed that Russia had falsified images of the MH17 crash site.
According to Naida, the images provided by Russia were made by Russian spy satellites long before the accident took place. As evidence, the Ukrainian official compared the images supposedly taken by the country’s security service and the images allegedly forged by Russia.
The Malaysia Airlines aircraft flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed in eastern Ukraine on July 17. All 298 people on board died in the accident.
According to Ukrainian authorities, the plane was shot down by independence supporters, while the latter deny the allegations, saying they do not have the means to hit a target flying so high.
Both Kiev and the West insist that the missile system used to shoot down the plane was delivered to independence supporters from Russia.
Russia has repeatedly denied the weapon transfers to Ukraine’s eastern regions.