By Ian Swanson - 07/19/14 08:29 AM EDT
Ukraine’s government on Saturday accused Russian separatists of removing 38 bodies and evidence from the crash site of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.
According to the Associated Press, Kiev believes members of Russian militias in Eastern Ukraine have transported bodies from the crash site, and specialists with “distinct Russian accents” have helped them.
President Obama and other world leaders have pressed Russia and the militant groups to allow international investigators access to the site amid fears that evidence will be lost.
U.S. officials say the civilian flight carrying 298 people was shot down by a surface to air missile from territory held by Russian separatists. The U.S. government also has accused Russia of supplying the militant groups with anti-aircraft weapons.
The militia groups have denied involvement in shooting down the plane.
An international delegation that went to the crash site on Friday was only allowed to stay there for 75 minutes.