Iranian Air Defense Shot Down Ukrainian Passenger Jet, Killing 176

first published on January 9, 2020 by

US and Iraq intelligence officials, along with significant evidence discovered by Ukrainian investigators, solidly suggest that Ukrainian International Airlines (UIA) flight PS752 was shot down by Iranian air defense systems on Wednesday.

Ukrainian

The US reasons for believing the Iranians were responsible is based on several pieces of data from satellites, radar, and electronic data collected at the time. US satellites detected Iranian air defense radars being turned on and locking the jet, and also detected the launch of two surface-to-air missiles at the time and location of the crash.

Additionally, Iranian anti air missile components were found under the flight path of the Ukrainian passenger jet. The wreckage itself shows what may or may not be considerable shrapnel damage throughout the fuselage and wings.

A separate investigation being carried out by specialists with a Ukrainian state commission have examined the wreckage itself, and have so far, concluded that the fire aboard the aircraft didn’t start in or near the engines as the Iranians claimed. The analysis of the wreckage suggests that a “terrorist act, clash with a drone or other aircraft, or an explosion caused by a missile is very likely.”

So far, the Iranian government has refused to turn over the “black box” data and other flight data. They deny they shot it down.

Photos of the missile components and electronic data collected by US intelligence data point to a high degree of confidence that the aircraft was shot down by one of Iran’s Russian-made SA-15 (9K330) surface-to-air missiles launched from a Tor air-defense system.

A significant portion of the passengers were Canadian nationals. The nationalities of the other victims include Ukrainians, Swedes, Afghans, Germans and Brits.

It is believed that the Iranians mistakenly shot the aircraft down, thinking it was a US attack aircraft responding to Iran’s missile barrage against US bases in Iraq, which occurred only hours before. Iranian sources on social media reported shooting down a US bomber at the time of the incident, but those posts were quickly deleted.

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