MH17 crash site now Ukrainian war frontline
According to ANP photographer Pierre Crom, the MH17 crash site is very dangerous. It is almost impossible for a investigation team in different vehicles to visit the disaster area.
Crom visited the disaster area on order of the ANP to see what it looks like 100 days after the tragedy. He found very different conditions than immediately after the disaster.
From the outset free access to the scene has not been possible, due to the struggle there between Ukrainian military and pro-Russian separatists.
The police and judiciary in the Netherlands have been investigating the cause of the disaster. There are strong indications that the plane was shot down. The forensic investigation has been hampered significantly by the circumstances on the crash site.
According to Crom, a lot has happened on the site after the disaster. As a result it is no longer possible to reconstruct the precise situation. "The crash site is now marked by large craters caused by heavy bombardment of missiles" Crom says, "It involves bombardments of the last week. There are also Ukrainian units entering the area and fighting with the separatists."
Crom found body parts in a burned piece of field. "I saw bones, sometimes about 20 centimeters long. And a piece of skull, hairs gray and blond and a vertebra and parts thereof."
Crom concludes that there must be even more body parts at the location. "Local residents also indicate that there is still an odor of decomposing bodies. It smells very strong, despite the cold. It was freezing when I was at the scene."
298 people died in the plane crash on July 17th, 196 of them were Dutch. To date 284 bodies have been identified.
Almost all of the victims' personal belongings have now been removed from the crash site. "I saw a suitcase, a shirt and playing cards. Also a shoe hanging in a tree. Compared to just after the disaster, almost everything is gone." says Crom