Rebels release, black boxes, train with bodies from downed jet

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Associated Press

Posted on July 21, 2014 at 9:00 PM

Updated Monday, Jul 21 at 9:00 PM

HRABOVE, Ukraine (AP) — Four days after a Malaysian airliner went down in eastern Ukraine, pro-Russian separatists who control the area have handed over the plane's black boxes to Malaysian representatives.

Bowing to international pressure Monday, they also released a train packed with bodies. The bodies of the 298 victims, most from the Netherlands, have become a part of the conflict in Ukraine because they could hold evidence of what brought the plane down on July 17 as it was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. Ukrainian authorities say the total number of bodies recovered is 282.

International forensics experts finally gained access to the crash site on Monday. The head of the Dutch National Forensic Investigations Team said seeing the wreckage gave him goosebumps.

In Washington, President Barack Obama said that the behavior of the pro-Moscow separatists has been "an insult to those who have lost loved ones." He also asked what was being hidden.

Russia's Defense Ministry said it has seen no evidence a missile was fired and denied involvement.

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