Fighting in Ukraine obstructs Netherlands` experts` trip to MH17 crash site

After two separate deals were struck, the pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine have agreed to international police deployment at the crash site and also allowed the experts from Netherlands to assess the site for more remains.

By Supriya Jha | Last Updated: Jul 27, 2014, 19:10 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau/Supriya Jha

Netherlands: The Dutch experts have postponed their trip to the MH17 crash site on Sunday due to escalated fighting between Ukrainian troops and pro-Russian rebels nearby.

"There is fighting going on. We can`t take the risk," the BBC quoted Alexander Hug, of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).

"The security situation on the way to the site and on the site itself is unacceptable for our unarmed observer mission," he added.

The OSCE investigators are in Donetsk for carrying out the assessment and examination of the crash site, however due to risky security situation in wake of increased fighting there, the plan had to be cancelled.

Also, the plan to deploy police at the crash site suffered a blow due to fighting near the crash site in Donetsk.

After two separate deals were struck, the pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine agreed to international police deployment at the crash site and also allowed the experts from Netherlands to assess the site for more remains and complete investigation of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crash.

According to Ukraine`s justice ministry, international monitors reached an agreement with the rebels, after which Dutch experts are on their way to the crash site of downed Malaysian jet MH17 in Grabove in Donetsk, which is a rebel-held territory.

Another deal has been struck between Malaysia and the pro-Russia rebels, according to which international cops would be deployed at the crash site to maintain the security of the crash site as many rebels and locals were accused of tampering with the evidence and stealing the belongings of the dead passengers.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 came crashing down on Jul7 17, after it was reportedly shot by a surface to air Buk missile, which might have been given by Russia to the rebels.

US intelligence officials said that the plane was shot by the rebels by mistake, and Russia created the conditions that led to the downing of the jet that killed all 298 on board.

The officials however said that there was no direct evidence linking Russia directly to the downing of Malaysian jet.

Ukraine, on the other hand, accuses Russia of being behind the disaster while Russia says Ukrainian military might have brought the jet down.

Five days after the plane crashed, the rebels allowed the experts to take some 200 bodies and remains to Netherlands, where they have been sent for identification, which can take months.

However, Australian PM Tony Abbott earlier suggested the possibility of more remains lying in the open at the crash site and hence the Dutch experts are heading to the crash site for a proper investigation.