HRABOVE, Ukraine (August 1, 2014) Dozens of international investigators were setting up a base of operations Friday at a chicken farm in eastern Ukraine from where they will carry out a search of the surrounding area for debris from the Malaysia Airlines crash, and the remains of as many as 80 of the people on board.
The region is still the scene of some fighting between Ukrainian troops and pro-Russia rebels.
As the investigators arrived, the sound of artillery fire could be heard in the distance, and hours earlier, at least 10 Ukrainian soldiers were killed in an ambush by the separatists in a town near the wreckage site.
The investigators are from the Netherlands and Australia, and are joined by officials with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
They traveled from the rebel-held city of Donetsk in 15 cars and a bus, to the crash site outside the village of Hrabove.
The investigative team's top priority is to recover human remains that have been rotting in midsummer heat of 90 degrees since the plane went down on July 17.
They will also try to retrieve the belongings of the 298 people killed aboard the Boeing 777.