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Canada presses Iran to send black boxes from airliner to France

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.

Canada has again urged Tehran to send the black boxes from the airliner Iranian forces shot down to France, where the data can be analyzed.

Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne on February 5 said he called for a “thorough, credible, and transparent investigation” in a call with Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif.

After initially denying it had anything to do with the January 8 crash of the airliner, Iran finally admitted responsibility for mistakenly shooting down the Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737, killing all 176 people on board.

Canada has said that 57 of the victims were Canadian citizens and 29 were permanent residents returning to the country.

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On February 4, Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization said it would continue to work with other countries investigating the downing of the passenger plane, but it has not released the black boxes.

Champagne said the preferred option for analyzing the black-box data was “for Iran to make use of the facilities offered by France with the technical capacity to do this work.”

The Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, has said the black boxes were damaged and that France was one of the few countries able to analyze the data.

Champagne said he also raised the matter of compensation for families of the 57 Canadians who were killed in the tragedy.