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Kiev not naming concrete schedule for experts to enter Boeing crash site — Malaysian PM

September 25, 2014, 10:40 UTC+3 UNITED NATIONS

According to Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, armed clashes still continue in the area, that’s why it is impossible to get to the crash site

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© EPA / Jerry Lampen

UNITED NATIONS, September 25. /ITAR-TASS/. The Ukrainian government could not provide a concrete schedule when international experts could enter the Boeing crash site in eastern Ukraine, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said after meeting with his Ukrainian counterpart Arseniy Yatsenyuk in New York.

“Kiev cannot give us any guarantees, including on the date of access, and we have to depend on them. According to Yatsenyuk, armed clashes still continue in the area, that’s why it is impossible to get to the crash site,” Mr. Najib said on Wednesday.

Asked whether Malaysia could initiate talks with self-defense militias to allow safe passage of the team, Najib said a “communication line” is still open but Kiev’s sensitivity should be taken into consideration.

The Malaysian prime minister stressed that international experts should get to the site ahead of the winter season that could affect the forensic evidence. He also expressed concerns over unclaimed remains of passengers and the crew of the crashed plane.

The Boeing 777-200 of the Malaysia Airlines en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed on July 17 in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk Region, some 60 km (over 37 miles) from the Russian border, in the zone of combat operations between the Donetsk self-defense forces and the Ukrainian army. All the passengers and crew members onboard the aircraft - 298 people - died. Most of the passengers - 196 people — were Dutch citizens.

A group of 30 Malaysian experts arrived in Ukraine on September 8 to continue the search for evidence and remains in the area. However, international experts have been unable to access the crash site because of fighting.

In its preliminary report, released earlier this month, the Dutch Safety Board, which is leading the investigation and coordinating the international team of investigators, said that the plane “broke up in the air probably as the result of structural damage caused by a large number of high-energy objects that penetrated the aircraft from outside.”

A final report on the results of the investigation into the crash of the Malaysian passenger aircraft in Ukraine is due to be presented next summer.

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