Russia faces threat of further sanctions

download (1)Britain, Germany and France agreed on Sunday they should be ready to ratchet up sanctions on Russia over the downing of a Malaysian jet carrying 298 passengers when European foreign ministers meet in Brussels on Tuesday.
Meanwhile rebels in eastern Ukraine on Sunday took control of the bodies recovered from downed Malaysia Airlines plane even as U.S. and European leaders demanded that Russian President Vladimir Putin make sure rebels give international investigators full access to the crash site. The rebels also have allegedly recovered the black boxes from the plane and will hand them over to the International Civil Aviation Organization, a rebel leader said. 

Reflecting the continued international pressure, French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister David Cameron in statement demanded that President Putin force separatists controlling the site to “finally allow rescuers and investigators to have free and total access to the zone.” 

The French presidency warned in a statement that “If Russia does not immediately take the necessary measures; consequences will be drawn by the European Union at the Foreign Affairs Council which takes place on Tuesday.” 

Bodies removed 
While Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said 192 bodies and eight body parts were placed in refrigerated train wagons provided by the Ukrainian government. European security agency OSCE said that rebels had said 169 bodies from the crash site were placed on the refrigerated train pending arrival of international experts. 
Nataliya Khuruzhaya, a duty officer at the train station in Torez, said emergency workers loaded the victims’ bodies into five sealed, refrigerated train cars.

Donetsk rebel leader Alexander Borodai said the bodies would remain in train in Torez, until the arrival of an aviation delegation. (The Hindu)

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