The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss breaking news that Iran President Hassan Rouhani has admitted that a senior IRGC commander accidentally shot down the Ukrainian UIA 752 plane that took off from Tehran’s international airport amid tensions between Iran, Iraq and the United States.
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The Islamic Republic of Iran deeply regrets this disastrous mistake.
My thoughts and prayers go to all the mourning families. I offer my sincerest condolences. https://t.co/4dkePxupzm
— Hassan Rouhani (@HassanRouhani) January 11, 2020
A sad day. Preliminary conclusions of internal investigation by Armed Forces:
Human error at time of crisis caused by US adventurism led to disaster
Our profound regrets, apologies and condolences to our people, to the families of all victims, and to other affected nations.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) January 11, 2020
Commander of Aerospace Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), Amir Ali Hajizadeh, said he “wished he was dead” upon learning of the Ukrainian jet downing and accepted full responsibility for the incident.
“After hearing about the crash of the Ukrainian plane, I wished to die”, Hajizadeh said during a press conference on Saturday.
I wish I had died and not witnessed such an accident
The commander explained that the incident had occurred as the country was bracing for potential US strikes and that the “likelihood of conflict” between the two nations has been “unprecedented” since the Islamic Revolution of 1979.
According to an early assessment, the Ukrainian plane was erroneously identified as an incoming cruise missile, which resulted in the tragedy.
Hajizadeh stated that the IRGC notified the authorities that it had likely hit the plane back right after the incident, yet this information was not disclosed to the public while the crash site was being investigated. Neither IRGC nor the country’s military sought to hide the incident, the due procedure was to be followed, he explained.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.