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(Adds comment from counter-terrorism agency)
AMSTERDAM, June 24 (Reuters) - A major telecommunications outage hit the Netherlands on Monday, crippling ambulance and emergency services numbers and prompting the police to send all duty officers onto the streets.
The outage originated on the network of national carrier Royal KPN NV, but was also affecting other telecommunications providers using KPN's backbone.
KPN said in a statement on its website its fixed-line and mobile networks were down. It did not give any indication of the cause, or how long it might last. Officials from the company could not be reached by phone or email for comment.
The outage was the largest in memory in the Netherlands, a nation of 17 million which prides itself on the technical prowess of its telecommunications infrastructure.
Anna Posthumus, a spokeswoman at the National Coordinator for Security and Counter-Terrorism, said "it's too early to say" whether there may have been a cyber attack. "Our first priority is making sure that everything works again."
People with medical or other emergencies were instructed on Twitter to go directly to hospitals, fire departments or local police stations.
The main police and emergency numbers were not working. Emergency service authorities published alternative numbers on Twitter.
A tweet by the military police, which guards the borders and international airports, said it too was not reachable by phone.
A police spokeswoman told the national broadcaster that all working police officers were being sent out on patrol. (Reporting by Toby Sterling and Anthony Deutsch; Editing by Jan Harvey and David Evans)