BY DARREN GOON Follow on Twitter
Of the 298 people who died aboard Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 after it was shot out of the sky over eastern Ukraine, 193 were citizens of the Netherlands.
Yesterday (Wednesday) was the first Dutch national day or mourning in more than half a century, and the Dutch government requested a minute’s silence to be held at 4.07pm across the country. 40 caskets arrived at Eindhoven military airport in the presence of King Willem-Alexander, Queen Maxima, and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, before being driven to a military base in Hilversum, where forensic investigators will begin the process of identifying the deceased.
Dutch footballers past and present also paid tribute to MH17 on Twitter. Ruud van Nistelrooy tweeted:
#MH17............................... Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you and those left behind..............— . (@RvN1776) July 23, 2014
The ex-Oranje striker also changed his profile picture to a black ribbon bearing the date of the tragedy (17th July 2014) and the flight number (MH17), a gesture also performed by ex-internationals Frank and Ronald de Boer on their joint Twitter account. Fellow striker Patrick Kluivert, currently assistant manager of the national team, also tweeted:
My Sincere Condolences go out to the Family and Relatives of the Victims of flight MH17