We have live updates from the investigation into the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines MH17.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 - What we know now

• 295 people were on board - 280 passengers and 15 crew.

• The Malaysia Airlines plane is a Boeing 777-200ER, which was delivered to Malaysia Airlines on July 30, 1997. It has more than 43,000 hours of flight time and 6950 takeoffs and landings.

• It departed from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol at 12.14pm Thursday local time and was expected to land at Kuala Lumpur 6.10am Friday local time (10am NZ time Friday).


• Malaysia Airlines tweeted that it lost contact with one of its flights as it was travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur over Ukrainian airspace.According to Malaysia Airlines, air traffic control lost contact with the plane at 2:15am local time.

• Anton Gerashenko, an adviser to Ukraine's interior minister, said on his Facebook page the plane was flying at an altitude of 10,000 metres (33,000 feet). He said it was hit by a missile fired from a Buk launcher, which can fire missiles up to an altitude of 22,000 metres (72,000 feet).

• The Donetsk region government said a plane crashed Thursday near a village called Grabovo, which it said is currently under the control of armed pro-Russian separatists. The region where the flight was lost has seen severe fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia separatist rebels in recent days.

• It has been confirmed 154 Dutch citizens were on board, as were 27 Australians, 23 Malaysians, 11 Indonesians, six UK citizens, four Germans, four French, four Belgium nationals, three Filipinos and one Canadian. An infant was among those on board. The nationality of the other 58 passengers on board had yet to be determined* It is believed up to 80 children were among the passengers.

• The following major airlines have confirmed they are avoiding Ukraine airspace:- Lufthansa, KLM, Aeroflot, Virgin Airlines, Delta, Air France, British Airways. Air New Zealand has confirmed it doesn't fly over Ukraine.