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Plane with first coffins of Malaysian airliner victims leaves Ukraine

Wednesday, July 23, 2014 - 01:14

The first bodies recovered from the MH17 crash site left Ukraine's Kahkiv airport and were flown to the Netherlands. Sarah Toms reports.

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It was a long journey but finally five refrigerated wagons reached Ukraine's Kharkiv airport. They carry the remains of some of the 289 victims, who died on board the Malaysia Airlines jet. Flight MH17 was shot down over rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine, where the government is trying to quell a pro-Russian backed separatist rebellion. These 12 wooden coffins are the first of what will be many to leave Ukraine. They were laid out on the tarmac for a short and sombre ceremony to mark the departure of the victims. Diplomats and politicians paid tribute to the dead. The Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister said the downing of the plane was an "inhumane terrorist act" carried out with help from Russia. But Russia and separatist rebels blame Ukraine. After the ceremony, honorary guards placed the coffins onto a transport plane to be flown to the Netherlands. Many of the victims were Dutch and the Netherlands will carry out their identification.

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Plane with first coffins of Malaysian airliner victims leaves Ukraine

Wednesday, July 23, 2014 - 01:14