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Investigators Turn Back from MH17 Site

Published: July 30, 2014 (Issue # 1822)



  • Self-proclaimed Donetsk Peoples Republic policemen guard a convoy carrying international forensic experts Monday.
    Photo: Dmitry Lovetsky / AP

Heavy fighting raged Monday around theMalaysia Airlines debris field, once again preventing aninternational police team charged with securing thesite fromeven getting there.

Government troops have stepped up their push towin back territory frompro-Russian separatists infighting that theUnited Nations said Monday has killed more than 1,100 people infour months.

Theinternational delegation ofAustralian andDutch police andforensic experts stopped Monday inShakhtarsk, atown about 30 kilometers fromthe fields where theBoeing 777 was brought down.

Sounds ofregular shelling could be heard fromShakhtarsk andresidents were seen fleeing town incars.

Themandate ofthe police team is tosecure thecurrently rebel-controlled area so that comprehensive investigations can begin andany remaining bodies can be recovered.

Thesecond canceled site visit over two days has strained tempers among theobservation team.

Theres ajob tobe done, said Alexander Hug, thedeputy head ofa monitoring team fromthe Organization forSecurity andCooperation inEurope. We are sick andtired ofbeing interrupted bygunfights, despite thefact that we have agreed that there should be acease-fire.

TheDefense Ministry says Ukrainian troops have entered Shakhtarsk, although checkpoints blocking thewestern entrance intotown remain under rebel control. It also said fighting was taking place inSnizhne, which lies directly south ofthe crash site, andin other towns inthe east.

Theself-declared Donetsk Peoples Republic said onits official Twitter that fighting was ongoing inthe village ofRozsypne, where some ofthe wreckage still lays strewn anduncollected.

Thehead ofthe rebels military headquarters, Igor Ivanov, told Russian state news agency RIA-Novosti that thevillage had fallen intogovernment hands, but that information could not immediately be confirmed.

Ukraine has accused rebels oftampering with evidence atthe plane crash site andtrying tocover up their alleged role inbringing theMalaysia Airlines jet down with ananti-aircraft missile.

Separatist officials have staunchly denied responsibility forshooting down theairliner andkilling all 298 people onboard.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Sunday, Jan. 25


Get out your running shoes for the 46th International Road of Life Marathon. Dedicated to the end of the blockade, three runs are offered 5, 21 and 42 kilometer runs starting in different places outside the city. Busses leave from 13/1 Arsenalnaya Naberezhny at 8 a.m. but check complete details and registration fees on www.newrunners.ru/race/doroga-zhizni-2015



If you are planning a wedding, head over to the Azimut Hotel, 43/1 Lermontovsky Prospekt from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The day includes live music, free dance classes and vendors selling wedding dresses, accessories, cakes and services to help make your special day perfect. Admission is free.



Monday, Jan. 26


Feeling stressed by the crisis? The Northwest Coach University at 3 Ulitsa Vostsstanaya is hosting a master class by lifecoach Tatiana Almazova. She will shed light on the coaching process, the usefulness of coaching during times of economic downturn and how coaching can improve your career and business prospects. The event starts at 7 p.m. and admission is free. Pre-register by calling 424 3700.



Discover the State Hermitage Museum's collection of English painting at a lecture by art historian Yelizaveta Renne at the Prince Galitzine Library, 46 Nab. Reki Fontanki. The event starts at 6 p.m. and the lecture will be followed by a concert of arias, songs and duets by English composer Henry Purcell. The event is free of charge.



Tuesday, Jan. 27


Celebrate the 71st anniversary of the end of the Siege of Leningrad on Palace Square with a free concert at 7 p.m. Listen to WWII-era songs and the poetry of Olga Bergholz while you peruse outdoor exhibitions dedicated to life during wartime. The event is capped off by a fireworks display at 9 p.m.



Stop by the Lexica School of Foreign Languages at 73 Ligovsky Prospekt from now until Friday for a free English lesson. The classes start at 7 p.m. and cover all levels, from Beginner to Advanced. Registration by telephone on 7641692 and a desire to improve your skills are the only prerequisites.







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