It is very important to do an investigation on what happened to flight MH17. Evidence like debris is still at the crash site. Samples need to be taken to search for explosives used.
However, according the governments of the Netherlands, Australia en Malaysia the site is not safe to sent people to.
Since August 6 when the recovery team left nobody did any investigation because of safety concerns.
So who is monitoring the situation? And when it it safe enough to return and do that very important investigation?
The situation at the crash site since July 17 is reported at this blog.
The Dutch government stationed a small team in Kharkiv. They will not enter the crashsite on their own. The crashsite is still under control of the separatists. Any access has to negotiated with them. As the Dutch government does not recognize the separatists negotations has to be done via the OCSE.
So this team will not be able to provide intelligence.
The OSCE is the only independant organization able to monitor the situation in East Ukraine. It is their responsibility to report on behalf of almost all UN members.
OSCE reports on the situation in East Ukraine using bulletins like this.
At September 14 two vehicles of OSCE with in total 6 staff members visited the area where MH17 crashed. One of the car was damaged by mortars. Very likely by the Ukraine army as mortars landed very close to separatists checkpoints.
The report is here. One of the statements in the report
While en route to the “DPR” checkpoint, the SMM observed impacts close to the SMM vehicles, incoming from the north, and aimed at “DPR” positions.
Since September14 OSCE only once visited the area around the crashsite. Their report on October 1 was:
The SMM visited the village of Hrabove (70km east of Donetsk) in order to assess the awareness of the local authorities and the local population about the procedures related to the recovery of items and other personal belongings of the passengers of the MH17 plane. In Hrabove and its surroundings, as well as in Rozsypne, the SMM observed leaflets and posters informing the public about the recovery procedure of personal belongings and/or other remains. These were displayed in visible places such as post offices, shops, bus stops, pharmacies, schools, administration offices, churches, checkpoints and neighbourhoods, including information boards. The SMM moved towards Petropavlivka (89km north-east of Donetsk), but was unable to continue further due to security concerns.
I could not find any evidence of OSCE visits to the crash site since beginning of September.
Anna News filmed at the crashsite at September 19 for at least one hour and no war activity was recorded.
Severall reporters went to the crashsite. Rudy Bouma of NOS experienced shelling and had to hide during his visit. It is not unlikely one of the parties involved knew he was in the area and did some shelling to let the world know to stay away. Literally an Ukraine army man said ” it is crazy to come here’
While Malaysia wanted to ask the United Nations to send peacekeeping troops to the crashsite, the Netherlands did not agree to this request. They stated the Malaysian Minister of Transport was misquoted. A few days later Malaysia stated it is up to the Netherlands and Australia to decide when to go back to the crashsite.
Dutch parlement on October 3 asks 43 questions to the Dutch government. One of the questions is this;
Volgens de Onderzoeksraad kunnen de onderzoekers de crashsite pas bezoeken wanneer een “veilige en stabiele” situatie bereikt is. Wat zijn de precieze criteria van een “veilige en stabiele” situatie? Is er een inschatting te geven van wanneer er een ‘veilige en stabiele’ situatie zal worden bereikt?
According to the Dutch Safety Board the investigator are only able to visit the crash site when a safe and stable situation has been reached. What exactly are criteria for a safe and stable situation? Can an estimate be given when a safe and stable situation will be reached.
So it seems nobody is frequently checking the area and all assume it is not safe. Maybe that is conveniant for some of the parties.