MH17 passenger remains return to a Malaysia in mourning - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

MH17 passenger remains return to a Malaysia in mourning

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The remains of Malaysian passengers aboard the MH17  arrive in Kuala Lumpur and are carried by soldiers. (Source: CBS) The remains of Malaysian passengers aboard the MH17 arrive in Kuala Lumpur and are carried by soldiers. (Source: CBS)

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA (CBS) - Malaysia observed a day of mourning on Friday as bodies and ashes of 20 of the 43 Malaysian victims of the MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine arrived at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang.

Next of kin and government officials attended a simple ceremony given as a mark of respect to the victims of the tragedy.

A specially chartered plane took off from Amsterdam earlier in the day and landed carrying the remains of the victims.

The victims were received in a solemn ceremony on the tarmac, watched by King Sultan Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah and Prime Minister Najib Razak.

The coffins, draped in Malaysian flags, were carried by teams of eight soldiers to waiting hearses before being taken to private funerals.

The government has urged people to wear black and observe a minute of silence and prayer to honor the victims in the first day of national mourning in Malaysia's history.

All 298 people onboard died when Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down over an area of eastern Ukraine controlled by pro-Russia separatists as it flew to Kuala Lumpur International Airport from Amsterdam.

The victims included 43 Malaysians and 195 Dutch nationals.

"I feel really sad that in a couple of months and all, I would say MAS (Malaysian Airline System) has just been unlucky," said Natalie Tang, a public relations executive.

Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein hugged bereaved relatives of victims who watched as coffins were driven away.

Copyright 2014 CBS. All rights reserved.

 

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