JUSTIN TRUDEAU SPEAKING ON WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 8. IMAGE VIA THE CANADIAN PRESS.
The prime minister says Canada has intelligence that suggests an Iranian surface-to-air missile shot down the flight, killing 176 people, including 63 Canadians.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said Canadian intelligence indicates an Iranian missile was responsible for shooting down an Ukrainian passenger plane, killing 176 people, including 63 Canadians.
At a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday Trudeau said that multiple sources point towards Iran being to blame for the crash of Ukrainian Flight 752.
“We have intelligence from multiple sources that indicate the plane was shot down from an Iranian surface-to-air missile,” Trudeau said. “It may have very well been inadvertent.”
“This new information reinforces the need for a thorough investigation into the matter.”
The plane went down only hours after Iran launched retaliatory missile strikes against the U.S. for the killing of top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani. Following the crash Iran refused to hand over recovered black box to Boeing, the American company who made the plane. Trudeau said Iran would work with Canada to investigate the crash.
Both Canada and Ukraine have dispatched experts to the area—the Ukrainian experts include those who worked on the 2014 case of a Malaysian airliner shot down by pro-Russian forces in their territory.
When asked if the United States deserves any blame for this tragedy Trudeau responded by saying it was “too soon to be drawing conclusions and assigning blame or responsibility.”
The press conference comes after several media outlets have published reports that multiple Western intelligence sources believed the plane was shot down by Iran. This includes the timing of radar and reports of missiles being fired at the approximate time the plane went down. The dead included 82 Iranians, 63 Canadians, 11 Ukrainians, 10 Swedes, four Afghans, three Britons, and three Germans. The youngest victim was born in 2016 and the oldest in 1950.
Trudeau said Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne spoke with his Iranian counterparts who said they will work with Canadians to investigate the crash.
“In light of this new information, it is now more important than ever that we know exactly how such a tragedy could have happened. The family of the victims and all Canadians want answers. I want answers. “