MH17 crash: Tears, shock as Netherlands mourns plane crash victims

Red, white and blue Dutch flags were lowered to half-mast inside the country and at embassies around the world. 

“I am deeply saddened by this horrible news,” King Willem-Alexander said in a statement.

“Our thoughts go to the families, friends and colleagues of the victims, and to those who do not know yet if one of their loved ones was on board the plane." 

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said he was "deeply shocked” by the catastrophe while Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten added that “the images I saw were terrible”. 

Malaysia Airlines vice-president Huib Gorter told a press briefing at Schiphol that a plane would take victims’ relatives to Ukraine to visit the crash site if they wished to make the trip. 

According to US Vice President Joe Biden, the Boeing 777 was “blown out of the sky” by what US defence officials strongly believed was a ground-air missile.