Ukrainian army seizes cities near plane crash site.  Government forces have taken control of several rebel cities in Ukraine’s Donetsk region close to where a Malaysia Airlines plane carrying nearly 300 people was shot down earlier this month, the army said Monday. They have seized the city of Debaltsevo and Saur Mogila, a hill used by pro-Russian militias to fire on soldiers, the army said in a statement.

The army also regained control of the cities of Shahtersk, located close to the wreckage of the Malaysia Airlines plane, and Torez, the town from which the victims’ bodies were taken in a refrigerated train to the city of Kharkiv. Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, a Boeing 777, was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it crashed after being hit by a missile in Ukraine near the Russian border July 17, killing all 298 passengers and crew on board.

Kiev and Washington have said that pro-Russian separatists shot down the plane.