The Netherlands, having its first national day of mourning in more than half a century, today witnessed the arrival of 40 coffins with bodies and remains of those who perished on flight MH17 on July 17.
King Willem Alexander, Queen Maxima and Prime Minister Mark Rutte gathered with about 1,000 relatives of the 193 Dutch victims and foreign officials at Eindhoven airport where two military planes landed shortly before 4 p.m. After the landing, a soldier played ‘The Last Post’ before a minute of silence was observed. Flags on public buildings around the country are flying at half-mast for the day.
The coffins were moved from the planes to waiting hearses one by one as spectators watched in silence.
The bodies will be transported to a military base in Hilversum for identification, a process that may take months, Rutte said at a press conference yesterday. The Dutch are leading the investigation into what happened to the flight, which departed from Amsterdam for Kuala Lumpur.
Text from Bloomberg, video from the NOS.