Hundreds flocked to the 'National Monument MH17' memorial site in Vijfhuizen on Wednesday, to pay tribute to the Dutch victims of the downed Malaysian Airlines flight on the fifth anniversary of the crash.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Dutch Foreign Affairs minister Stef Blok joined victims' relatives and mourners in paying tribute and laying flowers at the memorial site.

"We had 196 victims. So nearly everyone in the country knows somebody who was killed in flight MH17," said MH17 Foundation chairman Piet Ploeg, who lost his brother, sister-in-law and nephew in the crash.

Seventeen ambassadors of affected countries and the prosecution team were also among the attendees.

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was hit by a missile on July 17, 2014, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew on board.

Dutch prosecutors announced in June that they were charging three Russians and a Ukrainian national with murder for their alleged role in the downing of flight MH17.

Russia has denied all accusations that it was involved in the crash.

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Associated Press 11 May 2020 11:44 CEST

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