WASHINGTON, July 18 (Xinhua) -- The missile that shot down a Malaysian passenger jet "most likely" was fired by insurgents in eastern Ukraine, U.S. media reported Friday.
CNN said the conclusion was made according to a preliminary classified U.S. intelligence analysis, citing a U.S. defense official with direct access to the latest information.
The report gave no further details about the analysis. CNN said the official declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the information.
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 with 298 people on board crashed Thursday in Ukraine near the Russian border. U.S. officials told media that they concluded the plane was shot down by missile.
A report published on the website of The Wall Street Journal on Friday cited a Pentagon official as saying that the U.S. now believes the Ukrainian insurgents are responsible for the incident.
Officials in Washington also confirmed that the missile was fired from a Russian-made SA-11, or Buk, system, the Pentagon official said.
But the unnamed official added that a U.S. probe was not complete and investigators and analysts were still sifting the circumstances surrounding and leading up to the firing of the missile.
On Thursday, Ukrainian rebel leaders denied they had ground-to-missiles powerful enough to shoot down a Boeing 777 flying at a height of 10,000 meters.
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board said on its Twitter account on Friday that the agency will send at least one investigator to Ukraine to assist in the probe. The Federal Bureau of Investigation will do the same, according to The Wall Street Journal.
The White House on Thursday called for "a full, credible, and unimpeded international investigation as quickly as possible."
It is vital that "no evidence be tampered with in any way and that all potential evidence and remains at the crash site are undisturbed," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said in a statement.