Iran’s president Rouhani says downing Ukrainian plane ‘unforgivable error’

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said “one person cannot be solely responsible for the plane crash.” (File/AFP)
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Updated 14 January 2020

Iran’s president Rouhani says downing Ukrainian plane ‘unforgivable error’

  • Hassan Rouhani: Revolutionary Guard ‘admitting their mistake is a good first step’
  • Calls for a special court to be set up to probe the downing of aircraft

DUBAI: Iran will punish all those responsible for the accidental shooting down of a Ukrainian passenger plane, President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech on Tuesday, adding that the “tragic event” would be investigated thoroughly.
“It was an unforgivable error ... one person cannot be solely responsible for the plane crash,” he said.

Meanwhile, arrests have been made in relation to the plane crash, Iran’s judiciary spokesperson Gholamhossein Esmaili said.

“The judiciary should form a special court with a ranking judge and dozens of experts,” Rouhani said in a speech televised in Iran on Tuesday. “This is not an ordinary case. The entire the world will be watching this court.”

Rouhani promised that his administration would pursue the case “by all means.”

“The responsibility falls on more than just one person,” he said, adding that those found culpable “should be punished.”

“There are others, too, and I want that this issue is expressed honestly,” he said, without elaborating.

“Iranian armed forces admitting their mistake is a good first step ... We should assure people that it will not happen again,” Rouhani said, adding that his government was “accountable to Iranian and other nations who lost lives in the plane crash.”


Dubai government employees to start returning to work on Sunday

Dubai's Sheikh Zayed Road deserted during the coronavirus curfew imposed by authorities. (AFP)
Updated 27 May 2020

Dubai government employees to start returning to work on Sunday

  • Emirate is ‘heading in the right direction’ as it gradually reopens following success in handling pandemic

DUBAI: Half of Dubai’s government employees can return to their offices on Sunday, and the rest will be able to go back on June 14, the emirate’s government announced Wednesday.

The return to work will, however, be made with “intensified precautionary measures,” to protect workers, Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed said. 

“Our investments in the future paid off sooner than expected,” he also said on Twitter. “It is reassuring to know we’re heading in the right direction.”

Many businesses across retail, entertainment, sports and fitness industries have already been allowed to reopen. On Monday, Dubai announced it would be easing restrictions on movement, allowing people to move freely between 6 a.m. and 11 p.m. from Wednesday. 

Sheikh Hamdan also hailed the Dubai government’s handling of the crisis, saying no “vital services were affected despite the precautionary measures and movement restrictions imposed.”

The UAE reported 31,086 coronavirus cases as of Tuesday; with more than half of those infected having recovered. The country’s death toll currently stands at 253.