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Officials: 19 dead over 24 hours in Donetsk region in east Ukraine

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DONETSK, Ukraine — International observers have turned back from another attempt to reach the site where Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 went down in eastern Ukraine.

Observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe set out in two vehicles without crash investigators from the Netherlands who have been trying to reach the site for several days.

PHOTO: People gather in an underground car park to seek safety from incoming shelling in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)
People gather in an underground car park to seek safety from incoming shelling in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)

The OSCE observers turned back to the city of Donetsk after discussions with rebels.

Safety concerns and hindrance from the separatists who control the area have kept the investigation team away. Foreign governments whose citizens died have complained the site is not secured and some human remains have not been recovered.

Local officials said fighting over the past 24 hours killed 19 people in the region.

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PHOTO: Paul Picard, the head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) mission in Russia's southern Rostov-on-Don region, center, meets with local administration in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. The first members of the team of civilian monitors  arrived in Russia's southern Rostov-on-Don region where they were expected to hold meetings with officials from the regional administration, border guards and customs service, said OSCE spokeswoman Tatyana Baeva. (AP Photo/Sergei Pivovarov)
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