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By Matt Siegel
SYDNEY, July 23 Australian Prime Minister Tony
Abbott said on Wednesday that it was still unclear how many
bodies from downed Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 had arrived in
the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv and how many may have been left
behind at the crash site.
Five refrigerated wagons containing 200 body bags reached
Kharkiv on Tuesday after pro-Russian separatists agreed to hand
over the plane's black boxes to Malaysian authorities and the
bodies to the Netherlands, where many victims had lived.
The black boxes arrived in Britain on Wednesday.
Abbott said that based on an initial inspection of the
remains in the train carriages, that it was unclear how many
bodies may still be left behind in rebel-held territory.
"Based on early inspection of the trains in Kharkiv, we just
don't know how many bodies we have," Abbott told reporters.
"It's quite possible that many bodies are still out there in
the open, in the European summer, subject to interference and
subject to the ravages of heat and animals. That is the
predicament in which we find ourselves."
The Boeing 777 was shot down last week in eastern Ukraine en
route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, killing all 298 passengers
and crew on board. Twenty eight Australians were killed.
(Reporting by Matt Siegel; Editing by Nick Macfie)