Gunmen prevented monitors from the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe from observing the site where a Malaysian airliner crashed in rebel-held eastern Ukraine on Friday, the rights and security watchdog said.
Calling their behavior "impolite and unprofessional", an OSCE spokesman said some gunmen in the area seemed intoxicated while others would not let the team of about 25 observers look at the wreckage of the Boeing 777.
"We had expected unfettered access, that's the way we work," Michael Bociurkiw told a news conference. "Unfortunately the task was made very difficult. Upon arrival at the site ... we encountered armed personnel who acted in a very impolite and unprofessional manner. Some of them even looked slightly intoxicated."
The monitors only stayed at the site for about 75 minutes before they left, frustrated by the lack of access. The bodies had not been touched and lay as they fell — and personal possessions appeared to have been arranged in piles as if "for show,” Bociurkiw said.
First published July 18 2014, 3:47 PM