France ready to participate in investigation into UIA plane crash in Tehran
Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs of France Jean-Yves Le Drian has said that his country was ready to participate in the investigation into the crash of a Boeing 737-800 of Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) in Tehran.
"France is ready to contribute its expertise if necessary to the crash probe," he said on air of the RTL radio station on Friday.
At the same time, Le Drian refused to make any assumptions regarding the cause for the crash.
"Before taking any position we need a clear understanding of what had happened, and that is what international investigations are for," the minister said.
As reported, the head of Iran's Civil Aviation Organization commission for accidents investigation from Iran's flight regulator, Hassan Rezaifar, said that Iran may request assistance from Russia, Ukraine, France and Canada in deciphering the "black boxes" of the Boeing 737-800 airliner that crashed near Tehran. He stated that Iran was confident that the Ukrainian plane was not shot down by a missile.
Earlier, the Associated Press reported that the Iranian authorities invited the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board to participate in the investigation of the crash. The board said it would "assess the level of its participation in the investigation."
On January 9, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said intelligence agencies of Canada and its allies believe that the cause of the crash of the Ukrainian passenger plane near Tehran was a surface-to-air missile.
The UIA Boeing 737-800 passenger plane, flight PS752 from the Tehran to Kyiv, crashed in the area of Imam Khomeini International Airport in Tehran immediately after take-off early in the morning of January 8. Some 167 passengers and nine crew members on board died.
Among the dead were 11 citizens of Ukraine (among them 9 crew members), 82 citizens of Iran, 63 – of Canada, 10 – of Sweden, four – of Afghanistan and three each from Germany and the UK.