Debris is seen from an Ukrainian plane which crashed as authorities work at the scene in Shahedshahr, southwest of the capital Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Ebrahim Noroozi

Debris is seen from an Ukrainian plane which crashed as authorities work at the scene in Shahedshahr, southwest of the capital Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Ebrahim Noroozi

Canada, allies file notice of claim against Iran for downing flight PS752

Statement: ‘Iran must fulfil its legal responsibility to make full reparations to the group of states’

Canada, Sweden, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom have delivered a notice of claim against Iran over its downing of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, the four countries said Thursday.

Foreign ministers from those countries, who lost citizens and residents when the jetliner was shot down shortly after taking off from Tehran in January 2020, said in a statement that Iran’s “actions and omissions amount to breaches of international law.”

The ministers said their countries, nationals and residents on board flight PS752 were seriously and irreversibly harmed by the tragedy.

“Iran must fulfil its legal responsibility to make full reparations to the group of states,” the ministers said in a statement.

A followup statement said Afghanistan, which is the fifth member of the International Co-ordination and Response Group for families of victims of Flight 752, will remain a “key partner” but not take part in the coming negotiations as it deals with a series of attacks in Kabul.

The other four ministers called on Iran to set a date to begin talks on the issue.

Their demands include an acknowledgment of wrongdoing, a full accounting of events that led to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard firing two missiles at the plane, a public apology, reassurances it will not happen again, transparent prosecutions and compensation for damages suffered by the victims and their families.

Canada has rejected a final report by Iran’s civil aviation authority that blames “human error” for the Revolutionary Guard firing at the plane.

The Revolutionary Guard shot the missiles at Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 shortly after it took off from Tehran on Jan. 8 last year, when “the aircraft was misidentified as a hostile target by an air defence unit,” says the Iranian agency’s final report into the crash.

Transport Minister Omar Alghabra and Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau largely dismissed the 145-page document, which was posted to the website of Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization.

“The report has really avoided addressing the substance and the real reasons behind shooting down the plane,” Alghabra said in an interview in March.

Alghabra said the report fails to explain why Iran kept most of its airspace open to commercial traffic despite having just launched a missile strike against a pair of U.S. military facilities across the border in Iraq.

All 176 people on board the jetliner were killed, including 55 Canadian citizens, 30 permanent residents and dozens of others bound for Canada. The Tehran-Kyiv route has been an inexpensive first leg of a trip from Iran to Canada.

The federal government continues to call for a “comprehensive and transparent” investigation conducted according to international standards. A Canadian forensic team will produce its own report based partly on intelligence “in the coming days,” Alghabra said.

Human Rights Watch said in a new report last week that Iran has harassed families of passengers killed aboard flight 752.

The organizations said that from last fall until January, it spoke with 31 family members of victims and “people with direct knowledge” of how Iranian authorities treated relatives.

It reported that 16 people said security officials threatened them not to speak with foreign media or followed relatives and friends who attended memorials.

“Family members said that in several instances, the authorities interfered with burial and memorial services, pressuring families to accept the government’s ‘martyrdom’ status for their loved ones, and published photos and videos without the permission of the families at services,” it read.

One person taken into custody was also tortured, the report said, detailing how in at least three cases family members were told they would face consequences if they didn’t remove critical social media posts against the government.

—Maan Alhmidi, The Canadian Press

RELATED: Ontario court rules deadly shootdown of Flight 752 in Iran was act of terrorism

Federal PoliticsFlight 752 crash in Iran

Just Posted

The number of skilled trades workers available is not enough to fill the current construction boom in Greater Victoria. (Black Press Media file photo)
Influx of skilled tradespeople falling behind Greater Victoria construction boom

Thousands of positions will be needed by 2030, despite flow of Camosun trades students

Research into the city of Victoria’s economic recovery through the pandemic shows things to be moving in the right direction. (Photo courtesy City of Victoria)
Data shows Victoria experiencing gradual economic recovery

Statistics for early 2021 show promising returns as Victoria 3.0 begins to take hold

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
B.C. teen who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Victoria police continue to look for missing man Tyrone Goertzen and are once again asking for the public’s assistance in locating him. (Photo courtesy of VicPD)
Victoria police put out another call for help finding missing man

Tyrone Goertzen, 33, was first reported missing June 4

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

Bernadette Jordan addresses the media following a swearing in ceremony at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on January 14, 2019. Jordan says the government will provide $2 million to allow First Nations to continue to strengthen the marine safety system across Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
First Nations receive federal funds to purchase marine rescue boats

Quatsino, Heiltsuk, and Kitasoo First Nation’s among eight across Canada to receive funding

One Reconciliation Pole and two Welcome Figures were unveiled during a ceremony in honour of truth and reconciliation on National Peoples Indigenous Day at the Vancouver School District in Vancouver, B.C., on Friday, June 21, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Horgan marks Indigenous Peoples Day by urging recognition of systemic racism

National Indigenous Peoples Day has been marked in Canada since 1996

Most Read