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MH17: Mystery over 'train of the dead'

July 20, 2014 17:37 IST

MH17: Mystery over 'train of the dead'

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A ‘train of the dead’ sits in a dilapidated eastern Ukraine station, which is said to contain more than 150 bodies from the MH17 crash site.

A delegation from the International monitoring body the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe arrived around midday local time to inspect the wagons, accompanied by a convoy of heavily armed and nervous rebels.

As they opened the metal door to one of the carriages to inspect the interior, a stench of death wafted out, and black body bags were visible inside. “The special monitoring mission in its third day dealing with the incident has now monitored the location where bodies are being refrigerated in three wagons,” said Alexander Hug, the deputy chief of the mission. “We have not been able to count them as that would be too difficult in this situation,” he added.

The OCSE, which has had its access to the crash site itself limited in recent days, left in a convoy to return to the crash site.

Armed separatists at the scene refused to say how many bodies were in the train carriages or when they would leave. The train driver said he had no idea of the train's destination.


Image: Members from Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe stand near a refrigerator wagon, which according to employees and local residents contains bodies of passengers of the crashed plane.
Photographs: Maxim Zmeyev/Reuters