Iran under pressure to release Ukraine flight black box

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A woman holds a poster during a commemoration ceremony for the people killed in the Ukraine International Airlines plane that was shot down in Iran in January, in front of the Iranian embassy in Kiev, Ukraine February 17, 2020. (REUTERS)
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Debris from the Ukraine Airlines plane that crashed after take-off on the outskirts of Tehran on 8 January. (Reuters/File photo)
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Updated 18 February 2020

Iran under pressure to release Ukraine flight black box

  • The jet was destroyed on Jan. 8 after taking off from Tehran

LONDON: The UK, Canada and other countries whose nationals were killed in the Iranian missile strike on a Ukrainian airliner in January are pressuring Tehran to hand over the flight’s black box, The Guardian newspaper reported.
The jet, which was destroyed on Jan. 8 after taking off from Tehran, included 82 Iranians, 63 Canadians, 11 Ukrainians, 10 Swedes, four Afghans, three Germans and three Britons. Tehran admitted that it shot down the airline, having first denied its involvement.
Following a meeting at the 2020 Munich Security Conference, Canadian Foreign Minister François-Philippe Champagne said: “On behalf of the grieving nations of this tragedy, we told (Foreign) Minister (Mohammad Javad) Zarif … that Iran must take steps toward resolving many outstanding questions of fact and of law.” 

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Nationals were killed when Iranian missile strike downed a Ukrainian airliner. The victims included 82 Iranians, 63 Canadians, 11 Ukrainians, 10 Swedes, four Afghans, three Germans and three Britons.

He met Zarif at the conference to discuss the black box and compensation for Canadian families.
Champagne said the black box, the property of Ukraine Airlines, should be sent to a third party — likely France — for experts to decode its contents.
Iranian aviation authority had said that it will not hand over flight recorders either to the aircraft’s manufacturer or US aviation authorities.


Turkey plans to resume flights with 40 countries in June

Updated 20 min 59 sec ago

Turkey plans to resume flights with 40 countries in June

  • Turkey largely sealed off its borders as part of measures to contain the coronavirus outbreak
  • Domestic flights resumed on Monday to some provinces

ANKARA: Turkey plans to resume flights with around 40 countries in June and has reached preliminary agreements for reciprocal air travel with 15 countries, Transport Minister Adil Karaismailoglu said on Thursday.
Turkey largely sealed off its borders as part of measures to contain the coronavirus outbreak. Domestic flights resumed on Monday to some provinces as Ankara eased restrictions after a significant drop in infection rates.
Karaismailoglu said flights would resume in five stages in June, adding Turkey was in talks with 92 countries on resuming flights in a safe manner.
“We believe that we have left behind an important point in the battle against the virus globally. Now, we have to continue our global ties and trade,” he said in a written statement.
Flights to Northern Cyprus, Bahrain, Bulgaria, Qatar and Greece will resume on June 10, he said. Flights to 17 destinations, including Germany, Austria, Croatia, and Singapore will restart on June 15. Flights to a further 16 countries will begin on June 20, 22 and 25, including to South Korea, Qatar, the Netherlands, Norway and Belgium, he added.
The 15 countries with which Ankara has reached a preliminary agreement to resume reciprocal flights include Italy, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates, Albania, Belarus, Jordan and Morocco.
Germany said on Wednesday it was talking to Ankara about reviewing travel restrictions but was awaiting a recommendation from the European Union.
The virus has killed 4,609 people in Turkey, with more than 165,000 infections so far.