Dutch declare day of national mourning

July 22, 2014 - 2:36 PM
Ukraine Plane

Police officers secure a refrigerated train loaded with bodies of the passengers of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 as it arrives in the Kharkiv railway station on Tuesday, July 22, 2014. The train carrying the remains of people killed in the Malaysia Airlines crash arrived in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on Tuesday on their way to the Netherlands, a journey which has been agonizingly slow for relatives of the victims. (AP Photo/Olga Ivashchenko)

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Dutch government has declared Wednesday a day of national mourning as the country prepares for the arrival of the first bodies of victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.

The country's king and queen will be at an air base in Eindhoven to greet two military planes that are scheduled to arrive around 4 p.m. (1400 GMT) Wednesday carrying the first victims' remains.

The government said Tuesday that church bells can be rung during the day and for the five minutes preceding the flights' arrival. Dignitaries will then observe a minute's silence and "everybody can join in."