Middle East, Europe

Top Ukrainian, Iranian diplomats discuss plane crash

‘Our demands remain unchanged,’ says Ukrainian foreign minister

Büşra Nur Bilgiç Çakmak   | 16.01.2020
Top Ukrainian, Iranian diplomats discuss plane crash Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Vadym Prystaiko ( Vladimir Shtanko - Anadolu Agency )

ANKARA 

Ukrainian and Iranian foreign ministers on Thursday spoke over the phone and discussed the Jan. 8 plane crash near Tehran.

We discussed repatriation of the bodies of the Ukrainian victims and also Ukraine's role in the joint investigation, in particular - access to the 'black boxes'," Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko said on Twitter.

“Our demands remain unchanged,” he added.

On Jan. 8, all 167 passengers and nine crew members died when the plane was brought down by Iranian missiles, shortly after takeoff from an airport in Tehran.

The victims were from six countries: Iran (82), Canada (57), Ukraine (11), Sweden (10), Afghanistan (4) and the U.K. (3).

Initially, Iran said it did not shoot down the plane, but later admitted “human error” culminated in the firing of the missiles. The announcement was followed by anti-regime demonstrations in Iran.

The disaster occurred a few hours after Iran fired missiles at Iraqi bases in retaliation for the U.S. killing of Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani on Jan. 3.

Iran arrested several people it says were guilty of firing the missiles but experts say they are likely low-level personnel taking the blame to protect more high-ranking officials.

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