As it happened: MH17 bodies transferred

Key points

  • The bodies of some 200 of the 298 people on Flight MH17 are being prepared for transfer by plane from Ukraine to the Netherlands
  • Reports suggest the crash site in rebel-held territory is being compromised, with pieces of wreckage cut into, possibly to retrieve victims
  • UK investigators are to examine flight recorders recovered from the wreckage, which the rebels handed over to Malaysian officials
  • Russia denies allegations the jet was hit by a missile it supplied to the rebels
  • EU states are moving closer to a new round of sanctions against Russia
  • Fighting continues between the rebels and government forces
  • All times BST (GMT +1)

Live text


  • Sherie Ryder 
  • Tom Geoghegan 
  • Jastinder Khera 
  • David Walker 
  • Helen Dafedjaiye 
  • Yaroslav Lukov 
  • Mario Cacciottolo & Holly Wallis 
  • Patrick Jackson 
  • Paulin Kola 

Last updated 22 July 2014


Welcome to the BBC's live coverage of the MH17 air disaster aftermath. A train carrying remains of victims of the crash in east Ukraine has just arrived in the city of Kharkiv, outside the conflict zone. With separatist rebels suspected of shooting down the jet, EU foreign ministers are considering more sanctions against Russia, which is accused of arming the rebels. Stay with us for breaking news, analysis and colour from correspondents, and comment from the web.


UK Foreign Office (FCO)

tweets: FS [Foreign Secretary] Hammond earlier - Today's EU meeting "is an opportunity for us to send a very clear message to Russia".


Ukraine's parliament has approved a presidential decree to call up more military reserves and men under 50 to fight the rebels and defend the border against a concentration of Russian troops, Reuters reports. After the vote, the agency says, scuffles broke out between nationalist politicians and members of the party that was led by the former President, Viktor Yanukovych, who was overthrown in February.


Maja Kocijancic, spokesperson for foreign affairs and security policy of the EU

tweets: EU Foreign Ministers pay tribute to victims of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 by a minute of silence at start of Foreign Affairs Council.


BBC Monitoring

Five refrigerated freight wagons carrying remains of people on Flight MH17 and a passenger carriage marked "Donbass-Moscow" arrived at Kharkiv-Balashovsky train station and are due to be taken to the Malyshev tank factory where the bodies will be loaded into refrigeration units supplied by the Dutch - Interfax-Ukraine news agency reporter at the scene. The train is surrounded by a police guard, the reporter adds.

TWEET 10:00

This photo of the train was tweeted by the BBC's Gavin Lee.

Train carrying victims


The West has so far refrained from "Level Three" sanctions - measures which would target entire sectors of Russia's economy. As a result, companies in Russia's crucial energy sector can still do business with Western partners, but they will probably find it harder to get Western loans. So how far do EU-US sanctions on Russia go? The BBC has this analysis.


Geoffrey Pyatt, US Ambassador to Ukraine

tweets: Welcome the arrival of remains from MH17 victims in Kharkiv. We honor them & must now ensure a full, unimpeded investigation to show truth.


Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski (L) and new UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond chat prior to the start of the EU Foreign Affairs Council meeting in Brussels.

Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski (L) and new UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond chat prior to the start of the EU Foreign Affairs Council meeting in Brussels.