News / Europe

    18 Dead in Donetsk Fighting

    A man crosses the main street of the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk, July 27, 2014.
    A man crosses the main street of the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk, July 27, 2014.
    VOA News

    Fighting between Ukrainian government forces and separatist rebels killed at least 18 people in Donetsk on Sunday, as an international monitoring team delayed its visit to the crash site of a downed airliner out of security concerns.

    Rebels said two children were among 13 dead in the city of Horlivka, while another five people were killed in clashes in a suburb north of Donetsk.

    International police postpone crash site visit

    Dutch, right, and Australian policemen talk in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, July 27, 2014.Dutch, right, and Australian policemen talk in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, July 27, 2014.
    x
    Dutch, right, and Australian policemen talk in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, July 27, 2014.
    Dutch, right, and Australian policemen talk in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, July 27, 2014.

    Police monitors from Australia and the Netherlands postponed plans Sunday to visit the Malaysian airliner crash site in eastern Ukraine, citing security concerns as fighting continued in the area.

    All 298 people on the Boeing 777 were killed when the plane was shot down 10 days ago en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. It fell in a rebel-held area of the Donetsk region, where fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia separatists has raged for months.

    Dozens of Dutch and Australian officials have arrived to investigate and aid in the recovery of human remains amid reports of evidence-tampering at the scene.  Malaysia said Sunday it would also be sending dozens of police to support the investigation.

    More fighting reported

    Alexander Hug, a Ukraine-based official with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, said reports of fighting near the crash site prompted the delay.

    "Unfortunately, the security situation on the spot and on the road to that site is unacceptable for us. We have taken the decision not to dispatch and deploy today,'' he said.

    The international team said it will attempt to visit the crash site on Monday if the security situation improves, Hug said.

    Rebel leader Alexander Borodai had agreed to allow international investigators safe access to the site.

    An AFP photographer heard artillery bombardments just a kilometer from the rebel-held town of Grabove near the wreckage on Sunday.

    Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak's office said Sunday in a statement that Malaysian police will join the monitoring team in Ukraine to "provide protection for international crash investigators."

    Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said unarmed Australian police will be sent to the rebel-held zone of the crash site as part of a Dutch-led police force to secure the area and help recover victims' remains.

    "Our objective is principally to recover the bodies. That is what the Australian people expect of us, that is what grieving families around the world deserve," he said.

    Identifying victims

    Dutch authorities say they have made the first identification of a crash victim.  They released no details to the public, but say the family has been informed.  Most of those killed were Dutch.

    The remains of 227 of the victims have been flown to the Netherlands, but observers in Ukraine say some bodies still lie at the crash site in the summer heat.  They say security concerns are making it difficult to collect the last of the remains.  

    Pro-Russia separatists have been blamed for shooting down the airliner with a surface-to-air missile.

    You May Like

    US, Somalia Launch New Chapter in Relations

    US sends first ambassador to Somalia in 25 years; diplomatic presence and forces pulled out in 1993, after 18 US soldiers were killed when militiamen shot down military helicopter

    Brexit Vote Ripples Across South Asia

    Experts say exit is likely to have far-reaching economic, political and social implications for a region with deep historic ties to Britain

    Russian Military Tests Readiness With Snap Inspections

    Some observers see surprise drill as tit-for-tat response to NATO’s recent multinational military exercises in Baltic region

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Marisha from: Russia
    July 30, 2014 5:00 AM
    Personally I support Putin's policy but not completely. I used to live in Ukrain and know this country very well. Eastern Ukranians consider themselves relative to Russians . They respect Putin and always voted for the presidents who promissed to be friendly to our country or event to become its part again.
    Sanctions were aimed at Russia even without Ukrain. Most Uropeans don't really understand what is happening in Ukrain. The illegitemate Ukranian authorities force ordinary people kill each other for nothing. I don't support our authorities who help their soldiers (National Guard) in hospitals. For what reason do we treat and care about them? I'm really sorry for the people in the eastern Ukrain. As for sanctions, It's a good challenge. The economy was ruined and is slowly recovering now. I believe our government is needed such an external imput to develop industry here. Thank you, US and the USA.

    by: Evan from: USA
    July 28, 2014 8:23 AM
    To AK: while Russians may very well be brainwashed now, and ready to die for their (suddenly) beloved Putin if attacked, they wont be willing to go back to being poor for him. Give it a year of declining economy and restricted travel/opportunities/freedoms, and the story will be very different. Strong sanctions now to utterly cut Russia off from the civilized world.

    by: Ultimate from: Netherlands
    July 27, 2014 3:35 PM
    We can knee Russia without single shoot- impose severe sanctions and ordinary people of Russia topple Putin.
    In Response

    by: Alexandr from: Russia
    July 28, 2014 6:03 AM
    Actually you cannot. Whatever severe sanctions the US/EU impose on Russia we'll never topple down the President. We got enough brains (technically, they are NOT washed, the opposite is true) not to respond in the way your leaders do.
    In Response

    by: AK from: the usa
    July 27, 2014 9:27 PM
    You're deadly wrong. 90% of Russians brain washed so severely that that will die for their Furer Putin.
    This is a new global challenge for all humankind.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Testing Bamboo as Building Materiali
    X
    June 27, 2016 9:06 PM
    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Testing Bamboo as Building Material

    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Orphanage in Iraqi City Houses Kids Who Lost their Parents to Attacks by IS

    An orphanage in Iraqi Kurdistan has become home to scores of Yazidi children who lost their parents after Islamic State militants took over Sinjar in Iraq’s Nineveh Province in 2014. Iraqi Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. airstrikes have since recaptured Sinjar but the need for the care provided by the orphanage continues. VOA’s Kawa Omar filed this report narrated by Rob Raffaele.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video New York Pride March A Celebration of Life, Mourning of Loss

    At this year’s march in New York marking the end of pride week, a record-breaking crowd of LGBT activists and allies marched down Manhattan's Fifth Avenue, in what will be long remembered as a powerful display of solidarity and remembrance for the 49 victims killed two weeks ago in an Orlando gay nightclub.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora