Iran Takes Responsibility for Downing of Ukrainian Airliner, Blames “Human Error”

By Danny C. | DCPeriodical | 01/10/20 |

A conclusion finally comes forward. After refusing to hand over the black boxes, Iranian authorities have now confirmed it was one of their missiles that “unintentionally” brought down Ukrainian Flight PS752 near Tehran on Wednesday.

From CBC:

A military statement carried by state media said the plane was mistaken for a “hostile target” after it turned toward a “sensitive military centre” of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. The military was at its “highest level of readiness,” it said, amid the heightened tensions with the United States.

“In such a condition, because of human error and in a unintentional way, the flight was hit,” the statement said. It apologized for the disaster and said it would upgrade its systems to prevent such “mistakes” in the future.

Iranian authorities have vowed to prosecute the parties responsible, while also blaming the US for instigating the circumstances which led to the heightened state of security within their borders the night of the incident.

The plane was downed mere hours after Iran had launched over a dozen missiles at bases housing US troops in Iraq in response to the US assassination of one of their top officials, General Qasem Soleimani, who was killed last week in Iraq, where he had come to discuss peace plans between Saudi Arabia and Iran with Iraqi officials mediating.

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif on Twitter offered “profound regrets, apologies and condolences” to those affected, but also blamed “US adventurism” for the accident. 

All 176 passengers and crew on the Ukrainian airliner died in the crash; 138 of which were en route to Canada. Fifty-seven victims were Canadian citizens. The rest of the victims came from Iran, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Sweden, and the UK.

The Canadian Press has independently confirmed at least 74 victims with ties to Canada, many of them students at Canadian universities. The Tehran-Kyiv route has been an inexpensive first leg of a trip from Iran to Canada.

National Post.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released a statement following the disclosure that said the government’s focus was on providing assistance and more answers to the families of the many Canadian victims.

He also vowed to work with Canada’s “partners around the world to ensure a complete and thorough investigation, and the Canadian government expects full co-operation from Iranian authorities.”

Trudeau’s government will be leading a group of nations that lost its citizens in the crash to advocate with “one single voice,” said Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne.

The government is also creating a task force of top public servants to make sure Canadian families affected by the crash get the support and information they need, [Trudeau] added.

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