Even though circumstantial evidence is mounting that pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine shot Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 out of the sky with a missile, the rebels have been frantically maintaining they had nothing to do with it. But they haven't convinced anyone of their innocence with their behavior at the site. The latest instance of this comes with word from the Ukrainian government that international investigators can't get to the site because rebels have set up mines around it.
Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council claimed Wednesday that "terrorists" -- the term it uses to describe rebels -- have set up firing positions and laid mines on the access road to the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.Ukrainian officials say the dangers in the area are such that it's "impossible" for investigators to work there.
The Ukrainian government and pro-Russian rebels are fighting over control of eastern Ukraine.
Dutch investigators in Ukraine did not mention mines but announced Wednesday that unsafe conditions kept their contingent from visiting the crash site for the fourth straight day.
Although these claims haven't been verified yet, they're very believable in light of the rebels' past behavior. Remember, these people only turned over hundreds of bodies stored aboard refrigerated train cars, as well as the black boxes, under intense international pressure.
The OSCE has called for a cease-fire so investigators can get to the site. His call was echoed by Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte, who personally asked Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko to stop the fighting long enough for investigators to start their work. The Dutch-Australian investigation team hasn't even been able to see the wreckage yet.
Looks like the pressure is on the rebels--and to a lesser extent, Kiev--to show some basic decency.