As this heavily Muslim nation in Southeast Asia mourned on a holy Ramadan Friday the sudden loss of a second Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 and its passengers and crew, people here and around the world were left to wonder why the plane was flying over a conflict in eastern Ukraine where increasingly powerful surface-to-air missiles were being used.

Thursday,Flight 17, with 298 people aboard, had been shot down over Grabovo, Ukraine, by what they described as a Russian-made antiaircraft missile. Fighting in eastern Ukraine between the Ukrainian military and pro-Russian separatists has been marked by the successful use of missiles against aircraft at higher and higher altitudes, although the downing on Thursday of Flight 17, struck at 33,000 feet, was the first at cruising altitude for modern commercial jets.

World leaders demanded an international investigation into the shooting down of a Malaysian airliner with 298 people on board over eastern Ukraine, as Kiev and Moscow blamed each other for a tragedy that stoked tensions between Russia and the West.

One U.S. official said Washington strongly suspected the Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 was downed by a sophisticated surface-to-air missile fired by Ukrainian separatists backed by Moscow.

There were no survivors from Thursday’s crash, which left wreckage and bodies scattered across miles of rebel-held territory.

In a statement delivered before dawn here, Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia pointedly noted that the International Civil Aviation Organization had declared the airspace safe and that the International Air Transport Association had not restricted travel there. “We must — and we will — find out precisely what happened to this flight,” he said.

The crash remained the subject of intense conversation and debate through Thursday night in the small Ukrainian town of Grabovo, as people tried to come to grips with what had unfolded in the fields where they work, just yards from their homes.

As a cloudy dawn came, the full horror of the field was on full display. Small white pieces of cloth dotted the grassy farmland, marking the spots of bodies.