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OSCE observers arrive at MH17 crash site

July 31, 2014, 15:06 UTC+3
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Groisman stated earlier in the day that local militia forces in the Donetsk region denied the OSCE observers and the experts visiting the crash scene
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July 31. /ITAR-TASS/. Observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) along with four Dutch and Australian experts arrived at the crash scene of the Malaysian passenger airliner in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk region, the OSCE mission in Ukraine said in a statement on Thursday.

“OSCE observers have for the first time in almost a week arrived at the MH17 jet crash scene and they are escorted by four experts from the Netherlands and Australia,” the statement said adding that the observers and the experts reached the site using a new route.

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Groisman stated earlier in the day that local militia forces in the Donetsk region denied the OSCE observers and the experts visiting the crash scene.

Viktor Nazarov, in charge of the Ukrainian military operation in the Dnepropetrovsk and Luhansk regions, said pro-Kiev troops were not waging “any combat actions within the 20-kilometer (12.4-miles) zone surrounding the crash site.

However, Sergei Kavtoradze, a member of the Security Council of the Donetsk People’s Republic, said in an interview with ITAR-TASS earlier in the day that the government troops continued military operation on Thursday near the crash scene of the Malaysian airliner.

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing-777 airliner en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed in the area of combat operations between local militias and Ukrainian governmental troops in east Ukraine’s Donetsk region on Thursday, July 17. All 298 people aboard the plane, including 193 Dutch nationals, were killed in the jet’s crash.

Pro-Kiev troops and local militias in the southeastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Luhansk regions are involved in fierce clashes as the Ukrainian armed forces are conducting a military operation to regain control over the breakaway regions, which on May 11 proclaimed their independence at local referendums.

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