News / USA

    Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes to Malaysia

    A pro-Russian fighter places a black box from the crashed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 on a table while handing it over from Donetsk People's Republic officials to Malaysian representatives in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, July 22, 2014. Senior Ukrainian separatist leader Aleksander Boroda, (wearing a blue jacket) stands off to the right.
    A pro-Russian fighter places a black box from the crashed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 on a table while handing it over from Donetsk People's Republic officials to Malaysian representatives in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, July 22, 2014. Senior Ukrainian separatist leader Aleksander Boroda, (wearing a blue jacket) stands off to the right.
    VOA News

    A senior separatist leader, Aleksander Borodai, handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts in the city of Donetsk in the early hours of Tuesday.

    “Here they are, the black boxes,” Borodai told a room packed with journalists at the headquarters of his self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic as an armed rebel placed the boxes on a desk.

    Both sides then signed a document, which Borodai said was a protocol to finalize the procedure after lengthy talks with the Malaysians.

    “I can see that the black boxes are intact, although a bit damaged. In good condition,” Colonel Mohamed Sakri of Malaysian National Security Council said in extending his thanks to “His Excellency Mr. Borodai” for passing on the recorders.

    Borodai also said a train carrying the remains of the victims of the Malaysia Airlines plane crash has reached Donetsk. It is on its way to Kharkiv, some 300 km (186 miles) northwest.

    The Malaysian experts and a Dutch delegation also on site in Donetsk will travel along with it, he said. 

    U.N. Security Council resolution

    The U.N. Security Council on Monday afternoon unanimously passed a resolution condemning the downing of the Malaysian passenger jet and demanded that pro-Russian separatists controlling the crash site allow investigators unrestricted accesss to the area.

    Council member Australia, which had 37 nationals aboard the flight, drafted the resolution. Foreign Minister Julie Bishop traveled to New York for the vote. She said Russia, which backs the separatists, must use its influence to ensure the resolution is implemented.

    "We must have answers; we must have justice. We owe it to the victims and families to determine what happened and who was responsible," said Bishop.

    U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power said a resolution should not have been necessary.

    "We welcome Russia's support for today's resolution. But no resolution would have been necessary had Russia used its leverage with the separatists on Thursday, getting them to lay down their arms and leave the site to international experts. Or on Friday. Or on Saturday. Or even yesterday, " said Power.

    Obama Urges Unimpeded Probe

    Earlier in the day U.S. President Barack Obama called on Russia to allow international investigators immediate, full, and unimpeded access to the site in Ukraine where a Malaysian passenger jet was shot down last week.

    President Barack Obama makes a statement on the situation in Ukraine and Gaza, at the White House in Washington, July 21, 2014.President Barack Obama makes a statement on the situation in Ukraine and Gaza, at the White House in Washington, July 21, 2014.
    x
    President Barack Obama makes a statement on the situation in Ukraine and Gaza, at the White House in Washington, July 21, 2014.
    President Barack Obama makes a statement on the situation in Ukraine and Gaza, at the White House in Washington, July 21, 2014.

    Obama said Monday the pro-Russian separatists who control the part of eastern Ukraine where the plane went down are preventing international investigators from gaining full access to the wreckage.

    “As investigators approached, they fired their weapons into the air. The separatists are removing evidence from the crash site, all which begs the question: What exactly are they trying to hide?” the president asked.
     
    U.S. officials say there is evidence the missile that brought the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 down was fired from territory controlled by rebels who Russia is backing and supplying with equipment that includes anti-aircraft weapons.
     
    Obama said Moscow has urged the rebels on, trained them, and armed them. And he said Russian President Vladimir Putin now should facilitate a transparent investigation.
     
    “Given its direct influence over the separatists, Russia, and President Putin in particular, has direct responsibility to compel them to cooperate with the investigation. That is the least that they can do," Obama said.
     
    The president said the separatists have been removing bodies from the crash site without following proper procedures, something he called an insult to the victims' loved ones.
     
    Obama has been speaking to leaders of nations whose citizens were lost on the flight.
     
    The U.S. leader said Russia will only continue to isolate itself from the international community if it keeps supporting the rebels.

    Former Pentagon official Dr. Anthony Cordesman was asked whether the magnitude of the downing of MH17 compels Obama to act more aggressively towards Russia. 

    Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxesi
    X
    July 22, 2014 8:15 AM
    After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.

    "I think the word compel isn't valid.  It [the downing of the jet] gives the U.S. more leverage in mobilizing world opinion and getting support for sanctions from European allies.​...but the key problem is how easily something like this can fade....the whole problem of how Russia deals with the states around it is going to go on in the future,​" he said.

    Kerry condemns Russia

    Secretary of State John Kerry has condemned Russia for what he called "overwhelming evidence" of complicity in Thursday's downing of the Malaysian airliner in eastern Ukraine.

    In a series of appearances on Sunday news shows, Kerry said the evidence points to Russia supplying pro-Moscow separatists with a sophisticated SA-11 anti-aircraft system and then training separatists to use it.  

    He said U.S. authorities have seen video, taken after the crash, of a missile launcher with at least one rocket missing. He said that battery was moved back into Russian territory from rebel-held areas in eastern Ukraine after Thursday's attack, which killed 298 people near the Russian border.

    EU to increase sanctions

    European leaders said Monday they were ready to slap increasing sanctions on Russia to force Moscow to use its influence over the rebels to stop the conflict and allow international investogators free access to the crash site.

    British Prime Minister David Cameron told Parliament Monday that Russia cannot expect to enjoy access to European markets and money if it fuels conflict in Ukraine.

    He also echoed comments by Obama that the separatists must ensure the bodies of the victims of the crash are repatriated and that international investigators must be given access to the crash site.

    Putin response

    Russian President Vladimir Putin once again on Monday said the airliner would not have gone down if Ukraine had not re-ignited fighting last month in the region with separatists.

    "We can say with confidence that if fighting in eastern Ukraine had not been renewed on June 28, this tragedy would not have happened," he said. "At the same time, nobody should or does have a right to use this tragedy to achieve their own selfish political objectives. Such events should not divide, but rather unite people. We need for all people who answer for the situation to uphold their responsibility both before their own people, as before the people of other nations, the representatives of which became victims of this catastrophe. It is necessary to do everything in order to secure the safe work of international experts at the site of the tragedy."

    Putin said Monday that Russia is doing everything possible to allow a team of experts from the U.N. International Civil Aviation Organization to investigate the scene.

    VOA's Luis Ramirez from the White House and Margaret Besheer from the United Nations contributed to this report. Some information provided by Reuters.

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    Comments page of 3
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    by: Hong Ha from: Vietnam
    July 21, 2014 11:39 PM
    Look at the video to find out who are telling lies that the rebels took properties of the dead passengers:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLdRBaL4-wU
    The rebels are just ordinary civilians and they have done their best to help the experts.

    by: Igor from: Russia
    July 21, 2014 10:48 PM
    I think the tittle "Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes to Malaysia" must be replaced with "Ukraine Rebels Hand over MH17 Black Boxes to Malaysia". Now you can point out who have been speading white lies about the event such as rebels transfering black boxes to Moscow, rebels preventing international experts from doing their work, rebels taking properties of the dead...Pls look at the face of rebels and their leaders, they are just ordinary people far from the politicians in Kiev who are hungry for power. As they are hornest, ordinary people, you cannot expect them to act as experts when an extraordinary event happens. So pls stop spreading lies about them. They have suffered enough!

    by: CT from: GA, USA
    July 21, 2014 9:40 PM
    I read a few online Russian newspapers. They have different info. One article reports there is a recording of rebels' communications on which they discuss whether the plane is 'civilian or not'. After the plane is shot down, they realize it is civilian. Another Russian news source wonders 'why International investigators are still in Kiev'. The author implies the international community simply doesn't care about the victims! Don't believe me? Look it up.
    In Response

    by: Ivanov from: Russia
    July 22, 2014 1:53 AM
    no need for believe, USA no reason. country of lies.

    by: Ciking7
    July 21, 2014 9:40 PM
    Look closely at the photo of Separatist leader Aleksander Borodai handing over the "black box" from downed MH 17 airliner in Donetsk in early hours of Tuesday, the battery locator beacon pinger is missing from it's black holders on the front of the "black box" . The mounted holders are empty in the photo. The recorder may already have been tampered with!

    by: James McQuaid from: Lansing, Michigan, U.S.A.
    July 21, 2014 8:02 PM
    With the murder of 298 people aboard MH17, it is self-evident that Russia is a state sponsor of terrorism, and it should be marked as such by the U.S. government.

    Over 100,000 people have signed a petition at whitehouse.gov declaring Russia to be a state sponsor of terrorism. Now you can also do something positive for the world by visiting this web page:
    https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/designate-russia-state-sponsor-terrorism/XMjbTltM

    Taken together, the four main categories of sanctions resulting from the designation include restrictions on U.S. foreign assistance; a ban on defense exports and sales; certain controls over exports of dual use items; and miscellaneous financial and other restrictions.

    The Case Against Vladimir Putin
    “In laying out the administration's indictment against Moscow, Obama and key members of his national security team have been pulling from a trove of classified intelligence. Among the most incriminating evidence against the separatists are images taken by U.S. spy satellites showing a plume of smoke rising from the separatist-held area where the missile was fired, officials said. The missile also was detected by the Defense Support Program, a constellation of Air Force reconnaissance satellites that sense the infrared signature of ballistic missile launches and nuclear explosions, Reuters reported. The satellites were used during the 1990-1991 Gulf War to detect Scud missile launches from Iraq and to warn civilians in Israel and Saudi Arabia of incoming strikes.”
    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/07/21/the_case_against_vladimir_putin
    In Response

    by: Ivanov from: Russia
    July 22, 2014 1:55 AM
    russia sattelite show no such lie for US sattelite. take picture and make lie from picture. that is US media and television. we are Russian, we not for lie of US. Russian much smart than US

    by: Melvin Corn Dierrhea from: USA
    July 21, 2014 6:56 PM
    Having re-routed flights from eastern Ukraine in the aftermath of last week’s deadly tragedy, the company has chosen instead to divert some of its planes over airspace which is even more dangerous.

    Data from Flight Radar 24 shows that Malaysia Airlines Flight MH4, an Airbus A380 flying from Kuala Lumpur to London, was diverted from its usual route over Ukraine in favor of passing over a country that is currently under siege by ISIS terrorists, some of whom are armed with U.S.-made Stinger missiles.

    A U.S. intelligence report last month concluded that it “appears likely/probable” that ISIS insurgents are armed with shoulder-fired surface-to-air missiles designed to bring down aircraft. According to estimates, ISIS now controls 35 per cent of Syrian territory.

    A May 2013 Federal Aviation Administration notice “strongly discourages” US operators from flying over Syrian airspace.

    Malaysia AIrlines’ decision is likely to spark a fresh wave of criticism given that the operator ignored a similar FAA warning dating back to April which prohibits US carriers from flying over Ukraine.

    Questions have abounded as to why flight MH17 pilots decided to overfly eastern Ukraine when most other major airlines have avoided the airspace for months.

    Data shows that MH17′s previous ten flight paths before the shoot down avoided eastern Ukraine entirely. MH17 pilots on the doomed airliner filed a flight path requesting to fly at 35,000 feet over Ukrainian territory, but were subsequently ordered by local air traffic control to lower their altitude to 33,000 feet to avoid other traffic.

    Another facet to the mystery is that, according to Iranian defense expert Babak Taghvaee, flight MH17 may have been escorted by Ukrainian fighter jets.

    by: Gweneth Vomit from: UK
    July 21, 2014 6:43 PM
    Coupled with the facts that the airliner was diverted into a war zone it needn’t have flew over, and also ordered to fly at a lower altitude, this new information very much leaves open the possibility that the US backed Ukrainian military was inviting a Russian attack in order to exploit it for political ends, or even conducting a false flag attack, as some have suggested.

    “Russian air space control systems detected a Ukrainian Air Force plane, presumably an SU-25 (fighter jet), scrambling in the direction of the Malaysian Boeing,” Lieutenant-General Igor Makushev of Russia’s Air Forces told a news briefing Monday.

    Makushev also invited the US to share satellite images that prove US State Department claims that a Russian sophisticated SA-11 missile system, transferred to pro-Russian militants was used to down the airliner.

    Meanwhile, former Associated Press reporter Robert Parry has been told by an intelligence source that the US is in possession of satellite imagery which could prove that Ukrainian troops were actually responsible for the shoot down of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.


    VOA??? Any real journalism on your part?? Of course not!!!

    by: chikwe from: University of Nigeria
    July 21, 2014 5:55 PM
    No man of good conscience can support the downing of MH17 aircraft. Any man who does so not only deserves a place behind bars but also does not deserve to dine among men with integrity. As such should be isolated and treated as an outcast.
    In Response

    by: John Brennan from: VA
    July 21, 2014 6:53 PM
    That would be US at the CIA, I have to confess.

    by: Frans from: Manado Indonesia
    July 21, 2014 5:06 PM
    Putin is equal to Gadaffy. It is clear he is the most responsible for this accident. The world must unite to isolate and to treat him as a criminal. FIFA has to consider to replace Russia with other country hosting World cup 2018.

    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    July 21, 2014 2:37 PM
    I believe that while happenings around the world - in Middle East, Ukraine, China-Japan, kidnap of over 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria, and ISIS in Iraq - to mention but a few - can provide some distraction from the US domestic problems, they cannot entirely obscure all the things the citizens of the US want the government out there that may not be forthcoming. Therefore trying to make Russia's involvement in Ukraine all the issues does not work. It is the same in trying to heap all the blame on Russia for a downed jetliner wherein those on the West's side have a lot to gain by it than those on Russia's side as regards motive.

    I think all the blame on Russia and Russia-backed separatists must be misplaced. Earlier in the day I saw on CNN those claimed to be denied access to the crash site confess that the separatists granted them unfettered access to the scene. And by the way, it is not only in Ukraine that separatists are at work. Who is taking the blame for such activities in Syria, Libya and Iraq where minorities are being wiped out, rights denied to women and children, and civilization turned back at least a millennium by the action of western sponsored separatists? It is wrong to set the whole world on fire when someone else does the same thing you're doing everywhere and elsewhere, just because you're not the one involved. We should stop the west from dragging the world into another war - cold or hot - which will set civilizations backward and neutralize the gains of democratization of the current millennium.
    In Response

    by: Ivanov from: Russia
    July 22, 2014 1:59 AM
    is true what US does to world, people blind with fear of US. moslem must remove US. Russia remove EU. world better place. afrcia not important. africa no need for worry with Russia.
    In Response

    by: 1worldnow from: Earth
    July 22, 2014 12:34 AM
    Good grief can you comment anywhere without blaming the US???? You are beyond pathetic! By the, what have you done to help rescue your little girls from the Boko Haram animals? Or is that not as important as blaming the US, FOR EVERYTING!!!! Wait, that's right..................the US is to blame for the kidnappings. Sorry. My bad.
    In Response

    by: meanbill from: USA
    July 21, 2014 8:32 PM
    The whole Islamic world is erupting in chaos and violence, killings, destruction and war, because the US, EU, and NATO countries keep arming and training foreign Sunni fighters in Jordan and Turkey, to wage war on the Shia led governments of Syria and Iraq, displacing over 1/12 million homeless people, and the killings of hundreds of thousands, and destroying their homes, towns, cities, and countries...... (but yet), the western world worries about those Europeans killed....

    The violence and killings have spread all through Asia, Africa, North Africa, the Middle East, but they're worried about one plane crash? ..... CRAZY isn't it?
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