Recovery workers at the site of a Ukraine passenger jet crash near Tehran, Iran, January 8, 2020
UPDATE, JAN 8:
On the second anniversary of the downing of an Ukraine passenger jet by the Iranian military killing all 176 passengers and crew, Iran State outlet Press TV headlines: “January 8: When Iran Shattered US Facade of Invincibility”.
Iran blames the incident on a misaligned radar and human error but the victims' families question the official narrative.
In a gathering at Imam Khomeini Int'l Airport last night, they said: "The truth must not be crushed for the sake of expedience."https://t.co/IXClus3cv9
— Kian Sharifi (@KianSharifi) January 8, 2022
UPDATE, JAN 7:
Ukraine, Canada, the UK, and Sweden confirm they have given up on discussions with Iran over compensation for families of the 176 victims of the Ukrainian passenger jet downed by Iranian anti-aircraft fire on January 8, 2020.
The four countries said in a statement on Thursday that they will now pursue legal remedies.
Despite our best efforts over the past two years and multiple attempts to resolve this matter through negotiations, the Coordination Group has determined that further attempts to negotiate with Iran…are futile.
The Coordination Group will now focus on subsequent actions to take to resolve this matter in accordance with international law.
Iran responded on Friday with the statement that it is prepared to hold bilateral talks with each of the countries.
The Foreign Ministry declared that Tehran has begun the process of paying $150,000 compensation promised to victims’ families in December 2020, and will continue to hold court sessions with families present over 10 unnamed people whom Iranian authorities have indicted.
UPDATE, JAN 4:
A Canadian court has awarded C$107 million ($83.94 million), plus interest, to the families of six people killed in Iran’s downing of a Ukrainian passenger jet on January 8, 2020.
All 176 passengers and crew were slain when two anti-aircraft missiles exploded near Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, soon after its takeoff from Imam Khomeini International Airport in Tehran.
The victims included 55 Canadian citizens and 30 permanent residents.
The lawyer for the six families, Mark Arnold, said his team will seek the seizure of Iranian assets in Canada and abroad.
Hours before the downing, Iran had fired missiles at US personnel on bases in Iraq. The attack was in retaliation for the January 3 assassination of Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Revolutionary Guards’ Qods Force, by a US drone.
The Iranian regime marked the anniversary of Soleimani’s death on Monday with rallies. President Ebrahim Raisi said in his speech, “If [Donald] Trump and [former US Secretary of State Mike] Pompeo are not tried in a fair court for the criminal act of assassinating General Soleimani, Muslims will take our martyr’s revenge.”
ORIGINAL ENTRY, DEC 17: Canada, Sweden, Ukraine, and the UK have warned Iran of legal action if Tehran does not act over the downing of a Ukrainian jet which killed 176 passengers and crew on January 8, 2020.
The four countries said in a statement that Iran continues to stall over reparations to the families of the victims, and set a deadline of January 5 for a response.
“The Coordination Group’s patience is wearing thin,” the quartet said, adding that they will “have to seriously consider other actions to resolve this matter within the framework of international law”.
Most of the passengers, slain when two anti-aircraft missiles exploded near Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, were residents or citizens of the four countries pursuing the complaint. More than 100 passengers were Iranian citizens, some of whom held dual nationality.
The incident occurred five days after the US assassinated Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of the Quds Force of the Revolutionary Guards, in a drone strike outside Baghdad International Airport. Hours before the shootdown, Iran fired rockets on Iraqi base with American personnel.
Iranian authorities initially claimed falsely that the jet crashed due to “catastrophic engine failure”. The military did not inform President Hassan Rouhani of the actual circumstances until 48 hours after the downing, and a statement was not issued to the Iranian public until January 11.
In June, Canadian experts concluded that Iran was “fully responsible” because of the “incompetence, recklessness, and wanton disregard for human life” of Iranian officials. The specialists concluded that the anti-aircraft fire was not “premeditated” or ordered by Iranian authorities, as a soldier “likely acted on his own”. However, they noted that Iranian authorities did not close airspace or notify airlines, and that after the shootdown, the site was bulldozed and access was blocked to the site, evidence, and witnesses.
Last May, a court in Canada’s Ontario Province ruled that Iran owes damages to relatives of the victims, finding “on a balance of probabilities” that the attack was an intentional act of terrorism.
Iran’s Cabinet declared in December 2020 that it had allocated $150,000 for the victims’ families, but no money has ever been paid.