Great tragedy and unforgivable mistake: Iranian president on military 'unintentionally' shooting down Ukrainian airplane

WION Web Team New Delhi, India Jan 11, 2020, 09.41 AM(IST) Edited By: Sparshita Saxena

File photo. Photograph:( AFP )

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The military statement reported by the state TV added that those 'responsible parties would be held accountable'.

Iranian state television on Saturday said that the Ukrainian International Airlines airplane was brought down by Iranian military due to "human error", news agency Reuters reported.

As per reports, the Ukrainian plane had flown close to a sensitive military site.

The military statement reported by the state TV added that "responsible parties would be held accountable".

The Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) Boeing went down outside Tehran shortly after take-off on Wednesday. The crash killed all 176 people who were on board including many Iranians and Canadians.

Iran's foreign minister Javad Zarif took to Twitter today and confirmed the same.

Zarif said that after an internal investigation, preliminary conclusions suggest that the Ukrainian airplane was shot down by military due to human error. 

Also read: In retaliation to missile attacks, US imposes more sanctions on Iran

"A sad day. Preliminary conclusions of an internal investigation by Armed Forces: Human error at the time of crisis caused by US adventurism led to disaster. Our profound regrets, apologies and condolences to our people, to the families of all victims, and to other affected nations," Zarif tweeted out. 

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani also tweeted out and confirmed Iran shooting down the Ukrainian passenger plane. Rouhani added that investigations to identify and prosecute those involved in "great tragedy and unforgivable mistake" is under process. 

"Armed Forces’ internal investigation has concluded that regrettably missiles fired due to human error caused the horrific crash of the Ukrainian plane & death of 176 innocent people. Investigations continue to identify & prosecute this great tragedy & unforgivable mistake. #PS752," Rouhani's tweet read. 

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Earlier, Britain and Canada also claimed that intelligence sources suggested a catastrophic error by Iranian air defence batteries had crashed the aircraft.

Iran had earlier denied the possibility of a missile strike behind the crash of the Ukrainian airplane. 

Also read: 'Ukraine gets access to crashed plane's black boxes,' foreign minister

Ukrainian and Canadian authorities had called for a thorough investigation into the mishap. 

Over 80 Iranians and more than 60 Canadians were killed in the plane crash. The Boeing 737 was taking off from Tehran for Kiev when it crashed killing all those on board. 

The crash came shortly after Tehran launched missiles at bases in Iraq housing American troops to avenge the US killing of a top Iranian general last week.

(With inputs from Reuters)