You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

World

  • Mom of Canada suspect: I cry for victims, not son
    The mother of the man accused of killing a soldier at Ottawa's war memorial then storming Parliament before being shot dead says she is crying for the victims of the shooting, not her son.
  • Airstrikes target oil filed in eastern Syria
     BEIRUT – Activists say the U.S.-led coalition has launched airstrikes on an oil field in Syria’s eastern province of Deir el-Zour that borders Iraq.
  • India picks up pace on economic overhaul
      NEW DELHI – After months of criticism for not moving aggressively enough on promises of an economic overhaul, India’s new prime minister has announced a string of policies designed to kick-start Asia’s third-
Advertisement

Train with plane crash bodies leaves rebel town

HRABOVE, Ukraine – A refrigerated train bearing the bodies of many of the 298 people killed in the Malaysia Airlines plane disaster pulled away Monday afternoon from a rebel-held town in eastern Ukraine.

An Associated Press reporter saw the train leave from Torez, nine miles from the crash site, and overheard armed separatists saying it was heading for the rebel-held town of Ilovaysk.

There was no official confirmation of that destination from the rebels.

Earlier in the day, Dutch experts had called for a full forensic sweep of the Flight 17 crash site and told armed separatists guarding the rail cars that the train must be allowed to leave as soon as possible.

Four days after the Boeing 777 was shot out of the sky, international investigators still had only limited access to the crash site, hindered by the pro-Russia fighters who control the territory.

Pressure was growing on Russian President Vladimir Putin – who the U.S., Ukraine and others say has armed the Russian-speaking rebels – to rein in the insurgents and allow a full-scale investigation into the downing of the plane.

Russia has denied backing the separatists.

There is great concern in the Netherlands about the bodies, since 192 of the plane’s 298 victims were Dutch and another was Dutch-American. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said Monday that repatriating the bodies was his “No. 1 priority.”

In Washington, President Barack Obama demanded that international investigators get full access to the crash site and accused the separatists of removing evidence.

“What exactly are they trying to hide?” he asked, a day after the U.S. presented what it called “powerful” evidence that the rebels shot down the plane with a Russian surface-to-air Buk missile.

In farm fields near the eastern village of Hrabove, Peter Van Vilet, leader of the Dutch National Forensic Investigations Team visiting Ukraine, said seeing the crash site was an emotional experience that gave him goose bumps despite the heat.

The team – which specializes in victim recovery and identification – observed some victims’ remains that had not yet been removed from the crash site and pressed the rebels to seal the refrigerated train cars.

The Dutch team also inspected the plane luggage gathered at the crash site and suggested it be put in a container and shipped out.

At the U.N. in New York, the Security Council will vote later Monday on an Australia-proposed resolution demanding international access to the crash site and a cease-fire around the area.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said his country would view a Russian veto of the resolution “very badly,” adding that “no reasonable person” could object to its wording.

At the Torez train station, the Dutch investigators stood for a moment with their heads bowed and their hands clasped before climbing aboard to inspect the train cars, surrounded by armed rebels.

AP journalists said the smell of decay was overwhelming at the Torez train station, and many with the inspectors wore masks or pressed cloths to their faces on the sunny, 84-degree day.

A Ukrainian train engineer told the Associated Press that a power outage had hit the rail cars’ refrigeration system for several hours overnight but the power was back up Monday.

The Ukrainian government is hoping it will go to the government-controlled eastern city of Kharkiv, where it has set up a crash crisis center, but the rebels have not confirmed any movement yet.

McHugh contributed from Kiev. AP staff writers Laura Mills and Nataliya Vasilyeva reported from Moscow and Mike Corder contributed from The Hague, Netherlands.

Advertisement