More than 60 international investigators and observers finally started work at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 Friday despite nearby violent clashes that left at least 10 Ukrainian soldiers dead. The investigators from the Netherlands and Australia, plus officials with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, were due to begin combing the area for remains of as many as 80 victims, and jet debris that could yield clues about the plane’s suspected shooting-down on Jul. 17.
The traveled from the rebel-held city of Donetsk in 15 cars and a bus to the crash site outside the village of Hrabove and established a base at a chicken farm. The teams worked underneath a blistering summer sun and to the sound of nearby artillery fire. Hours earlier, at least 10 Ukrainian soldiers were killed when their convoy was ambushed by pro-Russian separatist rebels in a town close to the wreckage site. Thirteen more soldiers were unaccounted for after the attack, officials said, and the bodies of four more people were being examined to determine whether they were soldiers or rebels.
- Alastair Jamieson
The Associated Press contributed to this report.