Investigators struggle to reach MH17 crash site as Ukraine fighting intensifies
Monday, July 28, 2014 - 01:12
Heavy fighting near the crash site of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17, continues to prevent access for investigators trying to determine the cause of the crash. Jillian Kitchener reports.
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Eleven days after it crashed, the wreckage of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 remains out of reach for international investigators.
For the second day running, fighting between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces has kept them away.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) DEPUTY HEAD FOR THE OSCE MONITORING MISSION IN UKRAINE, ALEXANDER HUG, SAYING:
"We were stopped because there was gunfire and what we understand was artillery impacts nearby, very near."
Residents too, face roadblocks as the fighting continues.
Ukraine says its troops have recaptured more territory from pro-Russian rebels near the site, although at least three civilians are reported to have been killed in the process.
(SOUNDBITE) (Russian) SHAKHTARSK RESIDENT OLGA, SAYING:
"It was horrible, we were hiding in cellars, children were crying, they were scared, there was no electricity, nothing, it was a nightmare."
It's a nightmare too for investigators and families of the those killed in the crash. The site has yet to be secured or thoroughly investigated. And the international community is ramping up the pressure for access.
Western leaders say rebels almost certainly shot the airliner down by mistake with a Russian-supplied surface-to-air missile, but until they can get to the crash site, there's little they can do to establish the facts.
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