International investigation into Ukrainian plane crash

Nick Sack

 A Ukrainian plane smouldering on the ground. A country on high alert. Two ballistic missiles. On Jan. 8, Iran shot down Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 after it took off from Tehran’s airport, according to The New York Times. The crash resulted in the death of 176 people — mostly Canadian and Iranian citizens. 

This news came shortly after Iran had launched missiles at Iraqi bases housing U.S. forces in retaliation for the assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani. In response to the crash, the Ukrainian general prosecutor’s office released a statement that the incident could have been a possible case of “willful killing and aircraft destruction.” 

Image via Pixabay
Image via Pixabay

 For three days following the crash, the Iranian administration denied allegations that a missile strike caused the airplane crash. According to The New York Times, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps of attempting to cover up a mistaken missile launch.

  Thanks to Rouhani’s ultimatum, Iran admitted its fault in shooting down the plane, yet still tried to blame the crash on heightened U.S. involvement in Iran. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted that “human error at time of crisis caused by U.S. adventurism led to disaster.” 

  Following Tehran’s admission, both Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky released statements, mentioning that “Canada will not rest until we get the accountability, justice and closure that the families deserve … The perpetrators must be held accountable. We look forward to further legal and technical cooperation.”

 Due to the rising tension in the region and a mistake that led to the deaths of 176 people, protests sparked in Iran, according to The Guardian. The protestors called for the resignation of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and for proper judicial actions to be brought against those responsible. 

  At this point, the black box from the plane, which contains data and recordings, has been sent to Kiev, Ukraine, in order to allow Ukraine, Canada, France and others to investigate the crash, according to The New York Times. Trudeau was very adamant about receiving the black box from Iran. “Iran does not have the level of technical expertise and mostly, the equipment necessary to be able to analyze these damaged black boxes quickly,” Trudeau said at a news conference in Ottawa, according to The New York Times.