A Ukrainian train carrying bodies from the Malaysia Airlines plane crash has left the station of the town of Torez.

Officials say the train will go to Kharkiv, but there is no confirmation.

Pro-Russian separatists, who are in control of the crash site, had placed the remains of the passengers of flight MH17 in refrigerated carriages.

Western countries say the plane was shot down on 17 July by the rebels, who have been involved in heavy fighting in the main rebel-held city of Donetsk.

The train's departure comes after tough negotiations between international investigators and the separatists to allow the bodies to leave the rebel-held area.

Ukrainian officials said the train was transporting 280 bodies.

Ukraine's deputy prime minister earlier announced the remains would be taken to the eastern city of Kharkiv, before being flown to the Netherlands.

All 298 people on board flight MH17 died when it crashed over the rebel-held area between Krasni Luch in Luhansk region and Shakhtarsk in the region of Donetsk.