The Ukraine government and Malaysia Airlines have confirmed that a flight crashed in Ukraine on Thursday.
Flight MH17 was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur over the country when it was shot down in the east of the country near Ukraine.
Reuters reports that the debris has been scattered over a seven mile area.
Ukrainian Interior Ministry spokesman Anton Gerashchenko says that the 280 passengers and 15 crew members have been killed.
Flight MH17 operated on a Boeing 777 departed Amsterdam at 12.15pm (Amsterdam local time) and was estimated to arrive at Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 6.10 am (Malaysia local time) the next day, Malaysia Airlines said. It was shot down about four hours after it took off.
People inspect the crash site of a passenger plane near the village of Grabovo, Ukraine, Thursday, July 17, 2014. Ukraine said a passenger plane carrying 295 people was shot down Thursday as it flew over the country, and both the government and the pro-Russia separatists fighting in the region denied any responsibility for downing the plane. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)
A man gestures at a crash site of a passenger plane near the village of Grabovo, Ukraine, Thursday, July 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)
A picture taken on July 17, 2014 shows the wreckage of the Malaysian airliner carrying 295 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur after it crashed, near the town of Shaktarsk, in rebel-held east Ukraine. (AFP Photo)
Bodies amongst the wreckages of the Malaysian airliner carrying 295 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur after it was reportedly shot down. (AFP Photo)
Wreckage of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 after it was shot down near Shaktarsk, Ukraine. (AFP Photo)
In this photo taken with a mobile phone provided by Andrei Kashtanov, smoke rises from where a Malaysia Airlines commercial plane crashed in eastern Ukraine, Thursday, July 17, 2014. Malaysia Airlines has said 295 people were aboard the flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. (AP Photo/Andrei Kashtanov)
Relatives of people onboard Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 from Amsterdam react outside the family holding area at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang on July 18, 2014. (AFP Photo)
The area that it vanished is a war zone where rebels and Russian-backed separatists continue to fight. Igor Girkin, commander of the rebel group the Donetsk People’s Army, has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Graphic photos from the ground (below) allegedly show victims, plane seats, and other areas of the plane.
Malaysia Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak said in a statement: “I am shocked by reports that an MH plane crashed. We are launching an immediate investigation.”
Boeing said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with those on board MH17, as well as their families and loved ones. We stand ready to provide assistance.”
Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko has pledged to investigate what happened, but has called the situation an act of terrorism.