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Pro-Russian rebels claim control of MH17 material

Ukrainian separatist leader Oleksandr Borodai on Sunday said some items, “presumably” the black boxes from the crashed Malaysia Airlines jet MH17, had been brought to the rebel stronghold Donetsk in east Ukraine.

KIEV: A Ukrainian separatist leader on Sunday said some items, “presumably” the black boxes from the crashed Malaysia Airlines jet MH17, had been brought to the rebel stronghold Donetsk in east Ukraine.

Oleksandr Borodai, prime minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, said at a news conference: “Some items, presumably the black boxes, were found, and they have been delivered to Donetsk and they are under our control."

A pro-Russian rebel earlier on Sunday tweeted that the data recorders had been brought to rebel stronghold Donetsk in east Ukraine.

Kiev has accused militia fighters of refusing to hand over the black boxes and moving victims' bodies to a morgue in the insurgent-controlled city of Donetsk.

Borodai earlier told reporters that rebels had never recovered the data recorders and denied tampering with any evidence.

AFP reported on Sunday that scores of bodies recovered from the crash site had been removed, and pro-Russian rebels had left the scene.

According to Associated Press, emergency workers and monitors were forced to hand over 196 bodies recovered from the crash site, and they were loaded onto refrigerated train wagons.

Russian media said the bodies were headed to Donetsk.

MH17 was heading to Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam when it crashed in east Ukraine after being reportedly shot down by a surface-to-air missile. All 298 people on board are believed to have been killed.

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