Friday October 9th, 2015 1:28AM

Train with plane crash bodies leaves rebel town

By The Associated Press
HRABOVE, Ukraine (AP) -- A refrigerated train bearing the bodies of many of the 298 people killed in the Malaysia Airlines plane disaster pulled away Monday afternoon from a rebel-held town in eastern Ukraine.<br /> <br /> An Associated Press reporter saw the train leave from Torez, 15 kilometers (9 miles) from the crash site, and overheard armed separatists saying it was heading for the rebel-held town of Ilovaysk.<br /> <br /> There was no official confirmation of that destination from the rebels.<br /> <br /> Earlier in the day, Dutch experts had called for a full forensic sweep of the Flight 17 crash site and told armed separatists guarding the rail cars that the train must be allowed to leave as soon as possible.<br /> <br /> Four days after the Boeing 777 was shot out of the sky, international investigators still had only limited access to the crash site, hindered by the pro-Russia fighters who control the verdant territory. Pressure was growing on Russian President Vladimir Putin - who the U.S., Ukraine and others say has armed the Russian-speaking rebels - to rein in the insurgents and allow a full-scale investigation into the downing of the plane.<br /> <br /> Russia has denied backing the separatists.<br /> <br /> There is great concern in the Netherlands about the bodies, since 192 of the plane's 298 victims were Dutch and another was Dutch-American. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said Monday that repatriating the bodies was his "No. 1 priority."<br /> <br /> In Washington, President Barack Obama demanded that international investigators get full access to the crash site and accused the separatists of removing evidence.<br /> <br /> "What exactly are they trying to hide?" he asked, a day after the U.S. presented what it called "powerful" evidence that the rebels shot down the plane with a Russian surface-to-air Buk missile.<br /> <br /> In farm fields near the eastern village of Hrabove, Peter Van Vilet, leader of the Dutch National Forensic Investigations Team visiting Ukraine, said seeing the crash site was an emotional experience that gave him goose bumps despite the heat.<br /> <br /> The team - which specializes in victim recovery and identification - observed some victims' remains that had not yet been removed from the crash site and pressed the rebels to seal the refrigerated train cars.<br /> <br /> The Dutch team also inspected the plane luggage gathered at the crash site and suggested it be put in a container and shipped out.<br /> <br /> At the U.N. in New York, the Security Council will vote later Monday on an Australia-proposed resolution demanding international access to the crash site and a cease-fire around the area. Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said his country would view a Russian veto of the resolution "very badly," adding that "no reasonable person" could object to its wording.<br /> <br /> At the Torez train station, the Dutch investigators stood for a moment with their heads bowed and their hands clasped before climbing aboard to inspect the train cars, surrounded by armed rebels.<br /> <br /> AP journalists said the smell of decay was overwhelming at the Torez train station and many with the inspectors wore masks or pressed cloths to their faces on the sunny, 84 degree Fahrenheit (29 degrees Celsius) day. A Ukrainian train engineer told The Associated Press that a power outage had hit the rail cars' refrigeration system for several hours overnight but the power was back up Monday.<br /> <br /> The Ukrainian government is hoping it will go to the government-controlled eastern city of Kharkiv, where it has set up a crash crisis center, but the rebels have not confirmed any movement yet.<br /> <br /> ---<br /> <br /> McHugh contributed from Kiev. AP staff writers Laura Mills and Nataliya Vasilyeva reported from Moscow and Mike Corder contributed from The Hague, Netherlands.
© Copyright 2015
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 9 months ago )
High court to adopt electronic filing of cases
The Supreme Court is belatedly developing an electronic filing system similar to those used in courts around the country, Chief Justice John Roberts said Wednesday in his annual end-of-year report.
7:57PM ( 9 months ago )
Storm brings snow, cold to West for New Year's
A blustery winter storm dumped snow and ice across the West on Wednesday, making driving treacherous in the mountains from California to the Rockies and forcing residents and party-goers in some usually sun-soaked cities to bundle up for a frosty New Year's.
5:19PM ( 9 months ago )
U.S. News
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 9 months ago )
Hall County conviction, sentencing to be reviewed by SCOGA
The State Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of a Hall County man when they reconvene in January.
2:37PM ( 9 months ago )
Local/State News
UN is next stop for Obama after success with Iran, pope; top issues are IS, Syria, Russia
NEW YORK (AP) — Fresh from successes on Iran and with the pope, President Barack Obama still carried heavy burdens into critical meetings this week at the U.N. General Assembly.They include the threat...
3:31PM ( 1 week ago )
Stunning Congress, House Speaker Boehner announces plans to resign; tea party declares victory
WASHINGTON (AP) — Plunging Congress into deeper turmoil, House Speaker John Boehner abruptly announced his resignation Friday, shutting down a tea party drive to depose the nation's highest-ranking Re...
6:14PM ( 1 week ago )
Tornado heavily damages 10 homes but causes no injuries on island in South Carolina
JOHNS ISLAND, S.C. (AP) — A tornado quickly blew through a neighborhood on the South Carolina coast early Friday and blew out windows, knocked down trees and heavily damaged ten homes.The tornado touc...
5:08PM ( 1 week ago )
Caterpillar says it may cut more than 10,000 jobs by 2018, lowers 2015 revenue expectation
Caterpillar is planning another round of job cuts that could exceed 10,000 people through 2018, as the construction and mining equipment maker adjusts to downturns in key markets.That could amount to...
10:06AM ( 1 week ago )
Escaped tarantula grounds Atlanta-bound flight in Baltimore
An eight-legged creature that escaped in the cargo hold of a passenger flight from Baltimore-Washington International Airport to Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International grounded the plane and sent passengers onto another flight.
By The Associated Press
9:06AM ( 1 week ago )