PS752: Canada Says Iran Not Forthcoming

  • Canadian officials say they received a report from Iran about the crash of a Ukrainian plane on January 8 containing limited information.
  • "The investigation is far from over, as there are still many key questions that need to be answered."
  • The official Canadian statement was issued in response to the latest statements by Iranian officials.

The Canadian government has confirmed that it has received a report from Iran’s Islamic Republic Aviation Authority about the crash of Flight 752, but this initial report contains only “limited and selected information.” Two federal cabinet ministers said they expect Iran to answer all questions.

Mourners console each other during a vigil for the victims of Ukrainian Airlines Flight 752 in Toronto on January 9, 2020.

Reacting to Iran’s first report, the Ministry of Transportation and the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a joint statement saying that Iran had only “confirmed information that we knew.” Canada’s Transportation Safety Board (TSB) Chair, Kathy Fox, said in a statement:

“This is not the final safety investigation report but rather a brief summary of the contents that were retrieved from the cockpit voice and flight data recorders last month in Paris and is consistent with the information that TSB investigators received while attending the download of the recorders in France.”

She added,”the investigation is far from over, as there are still many key questions that need to be answered.” The statement said that the Government of Canada deeply regrets the tragedy that occurred on January 8.

The Ukrainian plane crash killed 176 people, more than 60 of whom were Canadian citizens, and many of whom had ties to Canada. At the end of the statement, it is hoped that Iran will fulfill its obligations under international treaties with a clear and thorough investigation.

Responsible but not Accountable

Touraj Dehghani Zanganeh was appointed General Manager of Iran’s national airlines, May 5, 2019.

The official Canadian statement was issued in response to the latest statements by Iranian officials. The head of Iran’s aviation authority said yesterday that a review of the black box information of the Ukrainian plane showed that the passengers were in “physical health” until 19 seconds after the explosion of the first missile fired at the plane.

“Data recovery activity was all done with the aim of safety and preventing similar incidents,” head of Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization, Capt. Touraj Dehghani Zangeneh said. He added an appeal against “any political use of the process.”

“All three crew in the cockpit were controlling the flight until the very last,” Zangeneh said.

“What is evident is that Iran has accepted the responsibility for its mistake and therefore the country is ready for negotiations on paying full compensation for what (it has) done,” Dehqani Zangeneh was quoted as saying to IRNA.

Touraj Dehghani Zanganeh, who provided the latest information on the downing of a Ukrainian plane at a news conference on Sunday morning, said that passengers and crew were alive until the second missile struck, and that flight crews had tried to return the plane to the airport.

The Tehran-Kyiv flight was shot down at dawn on December 7, minutes after it was bombed by Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) missiles. All 176 passengers and crew were killed, including 29 children. The Islamic Republic hid the truth for three days and, after acknowledging it, called the issue a “human error.”

None of the missile defense officials or senior Revolutionary Guards officials have been held accountable. The Association of Families of Flight PS752 Victims said in a statement:

“Our important questions regarding the reason for the delayed takeoff and the pilot’s communications within that hour, which should have been included in the report of the black boxes, have also been left conspicuously unanswered.”

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Benedict Kasigara

I have been working as a freelance editor/writer since 2006. My specialist subject is film and television having worked for over 10 years from 2005 during which time I was the editor of the BFI Film and Television.

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