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Relatives of victims mark 5th anniversary of MH17 downing

VIJFHUIZEN, Netherlands (AP) — Five years after a missile blew Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 out of the sky above eastern Ukraine, relatives and friends of those killed are gathering at a Dutch memorial to mark the anniversary.

Hours before a memorial ceremony was scheduled to start Wednesday, families began arriving, many holding hands and clutching bunches of sunflowers.

The names of all 298 passengers and crew killed on July 17, 2014, will be read out at a solemn ceremony at a monument surrounded by trees — one planted for each victim — close to Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, where passengers boarded the flight heading to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and the head of a foundation of relatives of the dead are to deliver speeches at the ceremony.

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