Iran military admits to ‘unintentionally’ downing Ukrainian plane

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Shafaqna Pakistan: AUkrainian aircraft which crashed earlier this week in Iran had flown close to a sensitive military site belonging to the elite Revolutionary Guards and was shot down unintentionally due to human error, the Iranian military said in a statement read on state TV on Saturday.

The responsible parties would be referred to a judicial department within the military and held accountable, the statement said.

President Hassan Rouhani also confirmed the development and said that Iran “deeply regrets the disastrous mistake”.

In a series of tweets posted on Saturday, Rouhani promised that investigation would continue to “identify and prosecute this great tragedy and unforgivable mistake”.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran deeply regrets this disastrous mistake,” he wrote on Twitter. “My thoughts and prayers go to all the mourning families. I offer my sincerest condolences.”

All 176 people on board were killed in the crash. The Iranian military statement expressed condolences to the families of the victims.

The United States and Canada had said that the plane was shot down, a claim Iran had initially denied.

Meanwhile, Iran Foreign Minister Javad Zarif in a tweet confirmed the finding and expressed his sorrow over the loss of lives. “A sad day. Preliminary conclusions of internal investigation by Armed Forces: Human error at time of crisis caused by the United States adventurism led to disaster.”

“Our profound regrets, apologies and condolences to our people, to the families of all victims, and to other affected nations,” he added.

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