Tuesday, July 22, 2014

MH17 bodies leave Ukraine rebel area and reach Kharkiv


Train with MH17 bodies arrives in Kharkhiv (22 July) The Bodies left by train from a town near the crash site on Monday, arriving in Kharkhiv on Tuesday morning
A train carrying the remains of victims of the Malaysian airliner which crashed in Ukraine has arrived in the city of Kharkiv, outside rebel territory.
The transfer of bodies from flight MH17 follows international pressure on pro-Russia rebels, amid accusations that the aircraft was shot down.

Meanwhile international monitors say parts of the wreckage have been changed since they first saw it.
The Boeing 777 crashed last Thursday, killing all 298 people on board.

The Malaysia Airlines flight came down in rebel-held territory near the eastern village of Grabove.
Most of those who died were Dutch and the remains will be flown from a co-ordination centre in Kharkiv to the Netherlands for identification and forensic identification.

Armed man near body bags at the site of the crashed MH17 plane in Ukraine, 21 July 2014 There is concern that forensic evidence at the crash site could be lost 
Five refrigerated freight wagons carrying remains and a passenger carriage marked "Donbass-Moscow" arrived at Kharkiv-Balashovsky train station and are due to be taken to the Malyshev tank factory, Interfax-Ukraine news agency reports.
There, the bodies will be loaded into refrigeration units supplied by the Dutch, the agency says.
The Ukrainian government has said it will do "its best" to send the remains to the Netherlands on Tuesday.
Countries directly affected by the disaster, such as the Netherlands, Australia, and the UK, have been concerned that the crash site was not properly sealed off with the risk that valuable evidence could go missing.
A spokesman for the OSCE monitors at the site, Michael Bociurkiw, told the BBC that major pieces of the plane had been cut into and that large parts now looked different.
Western nations say there is growing evidence that flight MH17 was hit by a Russian-supplied missile fired by rebels. Russia has suggested Ukrainian government forces are to blame.
Late on Monday the rebels, including Alexander Borodai, self-styled Prime Minister of the Donetsk People's Republic, handed over the "black box" flight recorders to Malaysian officials at a ceremony in Donetsk.

A rebel places a black box from flight MH17 on a table at a meeting to hand two data recorders over to Malaysian officials in Donetsk - 22 July 2014 There is uncertainty about how much information the "black box recorders" might reveal
A satellite image shows the crash site of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in Ukraine - 20 July 2014 A newly released satellite image shows the crash site in the middle of Grabove in eastern Ukraine
Investigators hope the devices, described as being in good condition, will provide vital clues about what happened to the plane.

The handover of the "black boxes" and the transfer of remains followed talks between Mr Borodai and the Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.

European Union foreign ministers are meeting to consider further sanctions against Russia over its alleged backing for the rebels - something Moscow denies.

The meeting in Brussels is thought likely to discuss expanding the list of Russian officials targeted by sanctions, but the EU has so far steered clear of targeting whole sectors of the Russian economy.
Both the EU and the US imposed sanctions on Russia following its annexation of Crimea and the outbreak of hostilities in eastern Ukraine.

Pro-Russia rebel next to destroyed Ukrainian tank near Donetsk, 22 July 2014  
Fighting has continued in Ukraine despite the air crash, with the government saying 13 soldiers died in recent clashes
In a further sign of international concern, the UN Security Council called on Monday for a "full, thorough and independent international investigation" into the downing of the plane .
The resolution, proposed by Australia, also demanded that those responsible "be held to account and that all states co-operate fully with efforts to establish accountability".
The conflict between Ukrainian government forces and rebels has continued, with clashes on Monday in Donetsk.
In the latest move, Ukraine's parliament has approved the call-up of more military reserves and men under 50, Reuters reports.
After the vote, scuffles were reported between nationalist politicians and members of the party that was led by former President Viktor Yanukovych, who was overthrown in February.
Thirteen Ukrainian soldiers have been killed over the past 24 hours, a Ukrainian security official said. Three of them died as an explosives-packed bus blew up at a roadblock.
The fighting in eastern Ukraine erupted in April and is believed to have claimed more than 1,000 lives.

map CRASH MH17


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