STORY SO FAR
• Malaysia Airlines plane has been shot down over eastern Ukraine by a surface-to-air missile
• 27 Australians included in the 295 people on board
• Pro-Russian separatists being blamed but they have denied this
A MALAYSIA Airlines plane with 295 people on board, including 27 Australians, has been shot down in separatist-controlled eastern Ukraine.
Plumes of black smoke rose up near a rebel-held village of Grabovo in eastern Ukraine, at the crash site 40 kilometres (25 miles) from the Russian border. No survivors have been found.
Dutch authorities confirmed 27 Australians were on board, as well as 154 Dutch, 23 Malaysian, 11 Indonesian, six from the UK, four German, four Belgium, three Philippines, one Canadian and 47 were still unknown.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott has confirmed that 23 Australians were on board and inquiries are continuing.