Crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17/Timeline of Torez BUK trail photos

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These people are known to have access to the original NEF files:


  • Pavel Aleynikov uploads photo taken from his balcony Panoramio.


  • Pavel Aleynikov uploads photos of his house Дом 2 on Panoramio.



  • Djukov moves to 'an Ukrainian city':

    Vladimir, where were you on July 17, 2014? In a Ukrainian city. Thing is, the pressure from the supporters of the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic was harsh, because I’ve never hidden my views, therefore there was a real threat to end up dead in a basement. In June my family and I left our hometown Snizhne.

July 15th

Andrey Tarasenko @andrushka74 (now @parabellum_ua) posts a photo from his presumed balcony in Snezhnoe, showing smoke plumes in the south somewhere near Saur Mogila. Another photo from the same site but showing an alleged launch plume is posted on July 17th by @WowihaY's Snezhnoe News account. The photo is removed the same day, but "witness 13" managed to save a copy and posted it on his VK account. The photo is found by JIT two years later and included in the JIT report.

Max van der Werff provides more context:

  • ​MH17 – 1000 Days - April 20, 2017
    It is clear that the apartment from where the recordings were made, served as an observation post, but why did Andrey Tarasenko twitter a photo of July 15 and not the one of the smoke plume on July 17?
    Andrey Tarasenko claims he was walking home from work at the time of the attack:
    A Ukrainian miner says that at the moment of the catastrophe with the Malaysian Boeing he saw a white trace shooting from the ground into the air. Twenty seconds later, he saw smoke rising in the distance. Andrey Tarasenko said he and his friend were walking home when it happened. “Do you know how does a trace of a plane look like? It was the same, but this was a rocket launched from the ground,” Tarasenko said. Tarasenko estimated that he was on a 16 kilometers (10 miles) distance from the Boeing 777 crash site. He never saw the plane. (source)

July 17th

Nine NEF files created on July 17th
11-27 am
Pavel Aleynikov tweets at that he hears sounds of multiple rocket launchers from Saur-Mogil. At 11:31 he tweets that he can see smoke coming from Saur-Mogila. One minute later he takes first photo, DSC_9264. (Photo is possibly later published by Business Insider.)
Business Insider account:
Although he did not see the plane crash, he said he ran to his window after hearing the sound of an explosion after the plane fell to the ground. He could not see the situation from his balcony, so he climbed to the roof of his house and "saw the smoke on the horizon"
It is followed by a photo --see discussion and the photo on file.
@WowihaY reports a covered BUK with four missiles in Torez; tweet
Мимо нас, в сторону центра проехала установка ПВО. 4 ракеты, говорят это БУК#стоптеррор #торез в сторону #снежное
Past us, toward the center drove an air defense installation with 4 rocket, said to be a BUK. #stopterror Torez toward Snezhnoe.
16-25 - 16-30
Pavel Aleynikov takes two photos of alleged launch plume (DSC 9265, DSC 9266) and several photos of smoke coming from MH17 crash site.
6-44 pm
@aarongell, Editorial director @MaximMag asks Aleynikov for an interview.
7-23 pm
Djukov tweets photo DSC_9266: "свидетель скинул фотку момента пуска ракеты.На горизонте канатная дорога между Лутугина и Цоф #Торез граница #Снежное"
Discussion and initially published on twitter photo on file. (Very early on, in summer 2014, when geolocation was not available, our rough estimate was 'afternoon', based mostly on high Sun and not much shadow. KP analysed the 'original' photo (1.bmp), see below, with geolocation; their estimate is 14:00 to 14:30 local.)


  • December 24, Aleynkov gives interview to RTL. At about this time, 'original' photos 1.bmp and 2.bmp were first introduced.



  • Komsomolskaya Pravda estimates the azimuth of the sun to be 220 degrees (14-14-30 pm)
Terrikon apparently used by KP to estimate time. Here a photo, where it is called 'mine-pit named after Latugin (old)".



September 17
.BMP files 1.bmp and 2.bmp are unexpectedly removed from Dropbox


1.bmp and 2.bmp are back, with Krawetz considering 2.bmp fake; and BBC preview appeared on 25 April, 2016, with what may be yet another plume photo, discussed elsewhere