NationNational PoliticsPolitics Now

Obama demands Russia force separatists to aid Malaysia Airlines probe

RussiaAir Transportation DisastersBarack ObamaVladimir PutinMoscow (Russia)MalaysiaWhite House
Obama to Putin: Force Ukrainian separatists to cooperate with Malaysia Airlines crash probe

President Obama accused pro-Russia separatists of tampering with evidence at the site of last week’s crash of a Malaysia Airlines jet and called on Russia to use its influence to ensure a credible investigation into the downing of the plane over eastern Ukraine.

“We have to make sure that the truth is out and that accountability exists,” Obama said Monday outside the White House. “What exactly are they trying to hide?”

Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin, have a “direct responsibility to compel” Russia-backed separatist groups to cooperate with international investigators, he said.

Obama’s remarks came after Putin, in a video posted Monday on the Kremlin’s official website, said “everything should be done” to ensure a thorough and credible investigation but did not clarify how Russia would work to achieve that. 

Obama said Moscow can ensure that international experts are able to conduct the “solemn and sacred work” of recovering the remains of the 298 people killed in the crash.

"Our friends and allies need to be able to recover those who were lost,” he said. "That's the least that decency demands."

U.S. officials believe the commercial airliner was downed by an antiaircraft missile system probably supplied to the separatists by Moscow. Putin on Monday placed the blame for the tragedy on the Ukrainian government.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times


8:35 a.m.: This post was updated with President Obama's remarks.

This post was originally published at 8:18 a.m.


Related Content
RussiaAir Transportation DisastersBarack ObamaVladimir PutinMoscow (Russia)MalaysiaWhite House
  • Ukraine prime minister: 'Russia is on the dark side'
    Ukraine prime minister: 'Russia is on the dark side'

    Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk had harsh words for Russia and President Vladimir‎ Putin on Monday, saying the country is "on the dark side," blaming it again for the downing  of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and demanding that it close its Western border to halt...

  • Area known as 'Ellis Island of Dallas' at the center of Ebola scare
    Area known as 'Ellis Island of Dallas' at the center of Ebola scare

    Many have come to the neighborhood known as Five Points to escape. They wait in the low-slung, working-class apartments to find out whether they will be granted asylum and a shot at a new life away from the violence, poverty and disease that scarred the lives they fled in places as far away...