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Australia to send more police to Malaysian Airways MH17 crash site in eastern Ukraine

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Australia to send more police to Malaysian Airways MH17 crash site in eastern Ukraine

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Seventy-four coffins containing the bodies and remains of victims from the Malaysia Airlines plane disaster have been flown to the Netherlands from Kharkiv airport.

In Ukraine the Australian and Dutch Foreign Ministers held talks with officials over access to the crash site. Australia announced it will deploy a further 100 police.

“This will be a police-led humanitarian mission. And there will be body identification experts, forensic experts. And of course we will insure that they are safe, that they will have protection,” explained Julie Bishop, Australia’s foreign minister.

Eight days after MH17 was downed it was reported a large piece of the plane’s fuselage has been found in a wood near the crash site. More human remains have also been uncovered at the sprawling site spread across farmland in eastern Ukraine.

Two hundred and ninety eight lost their lives in the disaster, 43 were Malaysian.

In the country’s capital, Kuala Lumpur former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad was among hundreds who gathered at the national mosque.

Worshippers prayed for the speedy return of the bodies of those who died, but as authorities must first identify them and gather evidence it could take months before they make their final journey home.