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June 2012

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Five killed in 'deliberate attack' near royal bus

Five people were killed and 13 injured, five seriously, when a black car drove through barricades and narrowly missed a bus carrying the royal family during the Queen's Day celebrations in Apeldoorn. 

The car veered away from the open bus carrying queen Beatrix, crown prince Willem-Alexander and other members of the royal family and ploughed into a obelix, known locally as the needle. 

Police said the driver, who was seriously injured, is a 38-year-old white Dutch national. The attack appeared to be deliberate, police said at a news conference on Thursday afternoon. However, there is no indication that the driver acted together with any people or that there is any terrorist motive for the attack.

Police said the man was not known to the police nor was he believed to have contact with the mental health services. But 'the initial contact' with the man before he was cut out of the car indicated this was a 'deliberate act', police said. 

The festivities in Apeldoorn, which should have included a traditional file past, were immediately cancelled. 

Elsewhere in the country, official events and concerts to celebrate Queen's Day were scrapped. 

In a televised statement, queen Beatrix said her family was 'deeply shocked' that a day which begun in such an atmosphere of celebration should end so terribly. 'My family share their deepest sympathy with the victims and their relatives,' the queen said.

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