News / Europe

    Dutch Mourn Victims of Downed Malaysian Plane

    People pay their respects as a convoy of hearses, bearing remains of the victims of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crash, drive past in Hilversum, Netherlands, July 23, 2014.
    People pay their respects as a convoy of hearses, bearing remains of the victims of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crash, drive past in Hilversum, Netherlands, July 23, 2014.
    Sharon Behn

    Thousands of people lined the roads in the Netherlands on Wednesday, solemnly applauding the slow procession of 40 black hearses carrying the bodies of passengers killed when their passenger jet was shot down over eastern Ukraine.

    Some threw flowers in front of the cars, while others quietly lay bouquets and lit candles at the many impromptu memorials that have sprung up around the country.

    A memorial service was held in Hilversum for the 298 passengers and crew killed when the plane was shot down six days ago. Among the dead were 193 Dutch. Outside the service, mounds of flowers were laid out on the ground in the form of an airplane.

    Flight attendants and mourners gather near flower bouquets as they pay their respects at Schiphol Airport during a national day of mourning for the victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, in Schiphol July 23, 2014.Flight attendants and mourners gather near flower bouquets as they pay their respects at Schiphol Airport during a national day of mourning for the victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, in Schiphol July 23, 2014.
    x
    Flight attendants and mourners gather near flower bouquets as they pay their respects at Schiphol Airport during a national day of mourning for the victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, in Schiphol July 23, 2014.
    Flight attendants and mourners gather near flower bouquets as they pay their respects at Schiphol Airport during a national day of mourning for the victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, in Schiphol July 23, 2014.

    Moving ceremony

    Earlier in the day, plain wooden coffins carrying some of the bodies of those killed were silently lowered into the waiting hearses at the Netherlands' Eindhoven air base before leaving for Hilversum where the remains are to identified.

    The ceremony took place on the runway as dignitaries looked on. Flags at the airport flew at half staff, rippling in a breeze as coffin after coffin were taken off the two military planes that left Ukraine hours before. More caskets are expected to arrive soon.

    Dutch King Willem-Alexander, Queen Maxima, dressed in black, and Prime Minister Mark Rutte were among those at the ceremony.

    MH17 passenger nationalitiesMH17 passenger nationalities
    x
    MH17 passenger nationalities
    MH17 passenger nationalities

    Black boxes delivered

    The passenger plane was cruising over the fields of eastern Ukraine, more than 10,000 meters above ground and traveling in an internationally recognized air transport corridor when it apparently was knocked out of the sky - reportedly by a Russian-made surface-to-air missile.

    Dutch authorities on Wednesday delivered the plane's two so-called "black boxes" containing data and voice recordings from the MH17 flight to Britain's Air Accidents Investigation Branch for download. The Dutch experts said there was no evidence the data had been tampered with. Ukraine has placed the Dutch in charge of investigating the disaster.

    Ukraine's government blames separatist rebels supported by Moscow for the attack. U.S. officials say ill-trained pro-Russian rebels likely shot down the jetliner by mistake, thinking they were firing at a Ukrainian aircraft.

    U.S. intelligence officials have been telling reporters they found no evidence of direct Russian involvement in the incident, and they do not know whether any Russian troops were present when the missile was fired. They added that Moscow's active support for separatists trying to secede from Ukraine, however, "created the conditions" that led to last week's fatal attack.

     

    • The convoy of hearses with the remains of the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 drives past international flags as it leaves Eindhoven airport to a military base in Hilversum, July 23, 2014.
    • King Willem Alexander, Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and officials look at the convoy of hearses with the remains of the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 as it leaves Eindhoven airport to a military base in Hilversum, J
    • Flowers and a teddy bear are placed in front of a plane prior a ceremony to mark the return of the first bodies of passengers and crew killed in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, Eindhoven military air base, July 23, 2014.
    • Coffins of the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 downed over rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine are loaded into hearses during a national reception ceremony at Eindhoven Airport, Netherlands, July 23, 2014.
    • Honor guards take part in a ceremony for the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 before they are loaded on a transport plane heading to the Netherlands, at Kharkiv Airport, Ukraine, July 23, 2014.
    • Ukrainian honor guards lift up a coffin containing the body of a Malaysian Airlines plane passenger to load it on a Dutch cargo plane, in Kharkiv Airport, Ukraine, July 23, 2014.
    • Honor guards carry a coffin of one of the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 before loading it on a transport plane heading to the Netherlands, at Kharkiv Airport, July 23, 2014. 
    • Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak tables an emergency motion to condemn the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in eastern Ukraine, at Parliament House in Kuala Lumpur, July 23, 2014. 
    • Dutch flags fly half-staff in honor of citizens who were among the victims of flight MH17, in Delft, Netherlands, July 23, 2014.
    • U.S. President Barack Obama signs the book of condolence for the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 disaster at the Embassy of the Netherlands, as Deputy Chief of Mission Peter Mollema watches, Washington, July 22, 2014.

     


     

     

    You May Like

    Saudi Arabia’s New Female Politicians in the Other Room 

    Many in Saudi Arabia say elected representatives should share unsegregated spaces; according to a recent survey, more than half the Saudi population, both men and women, prefer to work in a segregated place

    Russia Not ‘Apologetic’ for Syria Airstrikes

    With Moscow criticized for targeting armed opponents of President Assad, Russia’s UN envoy says his country ‘acting in a very transparent manner’

    Pakistan Warns of Islamic State's Growing Reach

    Aftab Sultan, General Director General of Intelligence Bureau (IB), briefed Senate Committee in closed hearing, saying that IS-linked groups have been expanding in Pakistan

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Luther from: India
    July 24, 2014 1:03 AM
    Our deep condolences are with all those who lost near and dear ones. May God give strength to each and very one of you as memory of them will take times.

    by: Baldur Dasche from: Beirut
    July 23, 2014 5:21 PM
    It toiok Putin's ggoons 4 fdayy to gather the dead from kilometers of crash site. It took two days on a train to get them to Kharkov for 'packaging'.

    At this rate we're in for 5 days of political theatre. And 'official mourning' for, god bless them, a number of people who were very much like anybody else - but now, unhappily, are the focus of a world-class event. And the concommittent media circus.

    This is as undignified as them lying in sunshine they could no longer feel. Do what needs to be done, quickly and efficiently and get them home to the people who loved them.

    "World leaders" didn't. If they did, there would be no war in Ukraine and this would not have happened.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growthi
    X
    February 10, 2016 5:54 AM
    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Civil Rights Pioneer Remembers Struggle for Voting Rights

    February is Black History Month in the United States. The annual, month-long national observance pays tribute to important people and events that shaped the history of African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins reports how one man fought against discrimination to help millions of blacks obtain the right to vote
    Video

    Video Jordanian Theater Group Stages Anti-Terrorism Message

    The lure of the self-styled “Islamic State” has many parents worried about their children who may be susceptible to the organization’s online propaganda. Dozens of Muslim communities in the Middle East are fighting back -- giving young adults alternatives to violence. One group in Jordan is using dramatic expression a send a family message. Mideast Broadcasting Network correspondent Haider Al Abdali shared this report with VOA. It’s narrated by Bronwyn Benito
    Video

    Video Migrant Crisis Fuels Debate Over Britain’s Future in EU

    The migrant crisis in Europe is fueling the debate in Britain ahead of a referendum on staying in the European Union that may be held this year. Prime Minister David Cameron warns that leaving the EU could lead to thousands more migrants arriving in the country. Meanwhile, tension is rising in Calais, France, where thousands of migrants are living in squalid camps. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Families Flee Aleppo for Kurdish Regions in Syria

    Not all who flee the fighting in Aleppo are trying to cross the border into Turkey. A VOA reporter caught up with several families heading for Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.