MH17 site search resumes, Obama chides Putin over rebel support

GRABOVE, Ukraine - International experts pushed on Saturday with their painstaking probe at the crash site of downed flight MH17 in east Ukraine after US President Barack Obama called on Russia to heed international pressure to defuse the civil war tearing apart its neighbour.


Some 70 Dutch and Australian police experts were back for a second day scouring the vast scene with sniffer dogs for more human remains, while those leading the investigation have warned the grim task could take some three weeks to complete.


The shooting down of the Malaysia Airlines plane more than two weeks ago, killing all 298 people on board, refocused world attention on the conflict in Ukraine and pushed the United States and European Union into imposing the toughest sanctions against Moscow since the end of the Cold War.


Washington accuses insurgents of blowing the airliner out of the sky with a surface-to-air missile likely supplied by Russia, while Moscow and the rebels have pointed the finger at the Ukrainian military.


In a telephone call with Russian leader Vladimir Putin, Obama expressed his "deep concerns" about Moscow's increased support for separatist rebels waging a brutal conflict against Kiev that has claimed more than 1,150 lives.


 

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