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Saturday (July 17) marks the seventh anniversary of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 being shot out of the sky by a surface-to-air missile over eastern Ukraine.
All 298 people onboard were killed in the plane crash, including 10 Britons, becoming the tragic victims of the bitter civil war between the Ukrainian government and the Russia-backed rebel militia that followed the annexation of the Crimea by Russia.
It marked a dismal few months for Malaysian Airlines, who just four months earlier had 'lost' MH370 after it disappeared from air traffic control radars on its journey from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, China.
All 239 onboard are missing presumed dead.
Dutch investigators have blamed the shootdown of MH17 on pro-Russian separatists, who controlled the area the missile was launched from at the time of the attack. They have concluded that a Russian-made Buk missile was responsible.
The bulk of the victims – 193 out of 298 – were Dutch nationals with the route flying from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol to Kuala Lumpur.
The Dutch government has been leading the investigation and is taking Russia to the European Court of Human Rights.
Evidence is being heard against four fugitive suspects in their absence in the Hague – Sergei Dubinsky, Oleg Pulatov, Igor Girkin and Leonid Kharchenko.
But that has not stopped outlandish conspiracy theories being spread on MH17.
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CIA downed MH17
One of the more bizarre claims is that the US intelligence agency the CIA planted explosives on the plane and detonated them via a signal sent from a satellite in space.
Russian security expert Sergei Sokolov – head of a shadowy organisation called Analytics and Security which boasts close ties to the secret services in Moscow – claimed the jet was shot down in an operation called 17.17 by the CIA and other western intelligence agencies.
The barmy conspiracy theory accused the Dutch and Ukrainian secret services of complicity in an attack aimed at embarrassing the Kremlin.
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But he also appeared to admit the Russians tampered with the crash site, which is illegal under international law.
Sokolov said: "About two months before the tragedy we received information from our agents that a provocation against Russia was being prepared.
“We expected something like this. The day after the tragedy we sent our expert to the scene who gathered wipe-samples and scrape-samples from parts of the plane which were covered with soot.”
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The Illuminati shot the plane down
Another strange theory is that the Illuminati was responsible for the tragedy.
While conspiracy theorists believe the disappeared MH370 was the work of aliens, the Illuminati was apparently to blame for MH17 being shot out of the sky.
The Illuminati Watcher website said: "I followed the previous Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 (exhaustively) and concluded that it must have been aliens: one of the first conspiracy theories to surface, and until we hear otherwise I'm sticking with it.
"In that MH370 conspiracy theories post I referenced the fact that the alleged Illuminati might have been involved due to the number 777 being tied in. You'll notice that this MH17 was also a Boeing 777."
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The Illuminati originally refers to the Bavarian Illuminati, an Enlightenment-era secret society founded in 1776.
Nowadays there are many conspiracy linked to groups purporting to be connected to the original Illuminati.
These organisations have often been alleged to conspire to control world affairs, by masterminding events and planting agents in governments in their bid to gain political power and establish a 'New World Order'.
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MH17 full of corpses when it took off from Amsterdam
In a bid to defect attention, the Russians have even claimed the flight was full of dead bodies when it took off from Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.
Igor Girkin – one of the four men being tried in his absence in the Hague – made the incredible claim in the days after the tragedy.
He was quoted as saying: "According to the people who collected corpses, most of the corpses – 'stale' – people have died up to a few days ago.
"For the complete accuracy of the information can not answer – of course, it is necessary conclusion of forensic experts."
He also apparently said people that went to the crash site found many of the corpses were “absolutely bloodless”.
There has never been any evidence to support this outlandish claim.
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New World Order attempt to launch World War III
Similar to the claim the Illuminati was behind the devastating crash, this theory includes instigating the deaths of 298 innocent people by a shady organisation looking to advance its own ends
In the days after MH17 crashed, a commentator on the Before It's News community site said the tragedy was "clearly" an attempted false flag to launch a new global war by the 'New World Order'.
The New World Order is a power elite that is conspiring to rule the world.
According to this conspiracy theory, the group needed to provoke a global war because the US dollar was in trouble and its grip on power was in danger of collapsing.
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NATO wanted to assassinate Putin
An article by Russian newspaper Pravda, President Vladimir Putin was believed to be flying the same route as MH17 at the same time.
Putin's aircraft allegedly had "very similar contours and colouring" and was unpopular with the West at the time for his annexation of Crimea.
Pravda's Timothy Bancroft-Hinchley claimed that the deadly missile that struck MH17 was actually intended to take down the Russian president.
He asked: "After Iraq, after Libya, after Syria, would anyone seriously rule out a NATO attempt to murder President Putin."
But the Russian leader was not actually flying on July 17, 2017.
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Israel hoped to divert attention from Gaza
After the tragedy there was speculation that the downing of MH17 may have been an attempt by the Israeli government to divert attention from its ground operations in Gaza.
Media outlet Conscience claimd that the missile was launched by agents of the "US, Apartheid Israel, EU, Australia and neo-Nazi-backed Ukrainian Government" which has been "the only beneficiary from the MH17 atrocity and a key suspect" in the crash.
At the time Israel was receiving a lot of criticism from the international community for its onslaught of the Palestinian territory, and the theory goes that the country shot down MH17 and framed Russia for the downing of a civilian airliner.
MH17 never existed
According to the Russian website Amfora, the flight never existed and the plane never crashed.
The conspiracy theory claims the West transported debris into a poultry farm in the village of Grabovo, spread it out to mimic the scene of a plane crash and then said that a plane was shot down.
There are no victims, and all of the relatives are lying crisis actors according to the barmy claim. Russia always knew that there was never an actual plane crash, but could not say this without coming across as heartless, so they put together a series of ineffective excuses.
The idea was to humiliate Russia and isolate it from the West, but unsurprisingly there is no evidence to back up this outlandish claim.
- Plane Crash
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