In this photo released by official website of the Office of the Iranian Presidency, President Hassan Rouhani speaks in a meeting in Tehran, Iran, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. Iran’s president said on Tuesday a special court should be formed to probe the downing of a Ukrainian passenger jet that was mistakenly targeted by Iranian forces just after takeoff from Tehran, killing all 176 people aboard. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)

Iran announces arrests in plane crash as Canada, allies eye London meeting

The victims included 82 Iranians, 57 Canadians, 11 Ukrainians and nationals of Sweden, Afghanistan, Germany

Iran announced arrests today in the downing of the Ukrainian airliner that killed all 176 people on board last week as Canada and its international allies prepared for a meeting to push for justice for families of the victims.

The announcement by an Iranian judiciary spokesman follows the surge of angry protests in Iran over the downing of the Ukraine International Airlines plane, and after Iran denied for three days that its Revolutionary Guard had shot it down.

The victims included 82 Iranians, 57 Canadians, 11 Ukrainians and nationals of Sweden, Afghanistan and Germany.

Iran’s president also called for a special court to be set up to probe the downing last week of the plane by Iranian forces.

“The judiciary should form a special court with a ranking judge and dozens of experts,” President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised address to the Iranian people. “This is not an ordinary case. The entire the world will be watching this court.”

Rouhani called the incident “a painful and unforgivable” mistake and promised that his administration would pursue the case “by all means.”

Global Affairs Canada said Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne will attend Thursday’s meeting in London of the International Co-ordination and Response Group for families of victims of Flight PS752 ”to achieve closure, accountability, transparency and justice-including compensation-for the families and loved ones of the victims.”

Representatives of Ukraine, Sweden, Afghanistan and Britain will be there.

“Together, we will continue to expect and demand full co-operation and accountability from Iranian authorities. Our priority remains ensuring support of the families and loved ones of the victims,” Champagne said in a statement.

Canadian investigators were expected to have their first visit to the crash site outside of Tehran today, as part of an international team looking into the sequence of events that ended with a jet from Ukraine being shot out of the sky.

The aircraft was shot down just hours after Iran launched air strikes against two military bases in Iraq where U.S. forces, and also some Canadians, are stationed.

The air strikes were in retaliation for a targeted drone strike on Jan. 3 by the U.S. that killed Iran’s top general, Qassem Soleimani.

READ MORE: Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown, videos show

READ MORE: Canadian investigators to visit site of airplane crash near Iranian capital

— With files from The Associated Press

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Abbotsford Senior’s Marin Lenz signs with Calgary Dinos

3A provincial basketball most valuable player commits to Calgary school for the fall

Abbotsford looks to hold in-person public hearings, with audience size limited

Restricting attendance in 350-seat hall will allow two-metre distance to be maintained, mayor says

Central Abbotsford apartment to proceed to a public hearing – eventually

Six-storey apartment building would have extensive rooftop recreation area

Total Makeover Challenge moves to voting for Top 5 finalists

Online voting for Abbotsford challengers runs April 9 to 14

VIDEO: Abbotsford’s Sandy Hill Elementary hosts car parade for students

Local school lets students know how much they miss them as COVID-19 delays classes

Canadians awake to extra COVID-19 emergency benefit money, fear it’s a mistake

The CRA and federal officials are working to clarify the confusion around payments

Easter Bunny added to B.C.’s list of essential workers

Premier John Horgan authorizes bunny to spread “eggs-ellent cheer” throughout province

COVID-19 self-isolation plan or quarantine, returning B.C. residents told

Premier John Horgan says forms must be filled out by travellers

More than 400 animals have been adopted amid pandemic: B.C. SPCA

People are taking this time of social distancing to find a loyal companion through the animal welfare group

B.C. secures motel, hotel rooms for COVID-19 shelter space

Community centres, rooms reserved for pandemic self-isolation

Sanders drops 2020 bid, leaving Biden as likely nominee

Sanders plans to talk to his supporters later Wednesday

B.C. faith leaders, Horgan discuss need for virtual religious ceremonies

Leaders were open to providing other ways to celebrate during the pandemic

Emergency COVID-19 funding now available for children with special needs

Funding to be used to help support families through uncertain times of pandemic

Most Read