Iran sends black box of Ukrainian plane to France

July 20, 2020 - 10:55

TEHRAN — Iran has sent the black box of a Ukrainian passenger plane, which was accidentally downed near Tehran earlier this year, to France.

Iran's deputy foreign minister said the black boxes were taken to Paris on Friday and would be deciphered on Monday.

The Ukrainian passenger plane, with 176 people aboard, was mistaken for an invading missile. The tragic incident happened a few hours after Iran fired missiles at a U.S. airbase in western Iraq in retaliation for the January 3 assassination of General Qassem Soleimani. Following the retaliation attack, the Iranian military had been put on high alert. 

The victims of the crash included 82 Iranians, 63 Iranian-Canadians, 11 Ukrainians, 10 Swedes, four Afghans, three Germans, and three British nationals.

Earlier this month, Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine Yevhen Yenin said that the volume of compensation for victims of the Ukrainian plane crash will be discussed when the technical investigation is completed.

“At this stage, technical investigation has not yet been completed. If it confirms the fact of unlawful interference, it will be possible to proceed to the second phase of the negotiation process and more specifically discuss the volume of compensation. It’s still too early to talk about something,” Yenin told Ukraine 24 TV channel in an interview published on July 6.

He also said, “Black boxes have not been sent to France yet. As of today, we have another promise from the Iranian side to do this on July 20. A couple of days ago we received from the French authorities their consent to accept two of our experts who will participate in the process as members of the technical investigation group.”

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had announced on June 22 that Iran will send the black boxes to France.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran will send the black box of the Ukrainian airplane to France in the coming few days in order to read its information,” Zarif said in a phone call with Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne. 

France’s BEA air accident investigation agency is known internationally as one of the leading agencies in the world for reading flight recorders, and black boxes have been sent there in other high profile cases of crashes.

Head of the Judicial Organization of the Armed Forces said on June 30 that extensive investigations have been carried out over the Ukrainian plane crash incident and the dossier will be sent to court after investigations are completed.

“We have carried out extensive investigations in this dossier and have reached good results,” Shokrollah Bahrami told reporters.

Bahrami also noted that the families of the victims will receive financial compensation for the incident.


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