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Malaysia in mourning as MH17 remains return home

Published on Aug 22, 2014 6:21 AM
A plane carrying coffins with the remains of victims of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 sits on the tarmac at Schiphol International Airport in Amsterdam before flying to Malaysia on Aug 21, 2014. Malaysia will drape itself in black for a national day of mourning on August 22 as it welcomes home the first remains of its 43 citizens killed in the MH17 disaster. -- PHOTO: AFP

KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysia will drape itself in black for a national day of mourning Friday as it welcomes home the remains of 20 citizens killed on downed Flight MH17.

Malaysian King Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah and Prime Minister Najib Razak will attend a sombre ceremony at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, followed by a minute's silence observed nationwide for the victims - the first to arrive of 43 from the country.

Malaysians have been asked to wear black, the national flag will be flown at half-mast, and businesses, government agencies, and citizens across the Muslim-majority country have been told to refrain from festive activities out of respect.

"We have done what we can in trying to include the people in paying their last respects, especially during the one minute of silence," Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said on Wednesday.

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