Sinterklaas, a beaming, friendly saint with a white beard, is set to mark his arrival in Amsterdam with a parade so celebrated it is to be watched live on television throughout the Netherlands. The city centre is closed to all traffic as a golden barge bears the saint down the Amstel river, surrounded by a throng of private boats full of families trying to get close. Amsterdam is bursting at the seams and the police are out in force, struggling to manage the crowds on one of the busiest days of the year. Brigadier Pieter Vos is on duty with his young assistant, Laura Bakker, when the first grenade hits. As Sinterklaas prepares to address the crowds a terrorist outrage grips the heart of the city
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