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Iran confirms sending downed Ukrainian airliner’s black boxes to Kyiv

Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 crash wreckage. (Mehr News Agency/Released)

This article was originally published by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and is reprinted with permission.

Iran has confirmed it will send the black-box flight recorders recovered from a Ukrainian passenger jet that was shot down over Tehran on January 8 to Kyiv.

Hassan Rezaifer, head of the accident investigations unit of Iran’s civil aviation authority, told the Tasnim news agency on January 18 that it had not been possible to read the black boxes in Iran.

He said French, American, and Canadian experts will work with the equipment after it arrives in Kyiv.

“If this effort is unsuccessful, then the black box will be sent to France,” Rezaifer said.

On January 15, Oleksandr Ruvin of the Kyiv Research Institute of Forensic Studies said the international team would begin studying the black boxes on January 20.

Air-defense forces of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) shot down Ukrainian Airlines Flight PS752 shortly after takeoff, killing all 176 people on board.

Iran has said the downing was an accident.

The incident came shortly after Iran launched missiles at military bases in Iraq that hosted U.S. forces in response to an earlier U.S. airstrike that killed top Iranian military commander Major General Qasem Soleimani.