Amid fears of the eruption of a possible World War III, the Iranian Military has poured cold water on reports that its attack on a passenger jet belonging to Ukraine was intentional, insisting that it was an accident and laid blames errors from its base. The announcement was made on Saturday and was greeted with doubts and concerns especially given that the strike occurred on the same day that American bases in Iraq were struck by Iranian missiles.
The number one citizen of Iran, the President went on to Twitter to address the issue.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran deeply regrets this disastrous mistake,” President Hassan Rouhani tweeted just some moments after the official statement by the military was released. He went further and extended his condolences to the families of the deceased while also promising that they have begun carrying out investigations regarding the matter. The military also made their promise public, as they stated that any person(s) traced to the disastrous event would have to answer to legal consequences.
Panics have spread far and wide globally considering that the past few days have seen the United States of America and Iran engage in public spats and exchange of threats This has brought about expectations that have piled pressure on Iran to take responsibility for an occurrence that took the lives of all passengers aboard.
“The little credibility that the Islamic Republic had among its supporters suffered a major blow tonight,” said Rouzbeh MirEmbrahim, an independent Iran analyst in New York and a consultant with the United Nations. “This tragedy undermines the image Iran has cultivated as a military power and weakened it significantly both regionally and internationally.”
Another event that raised eyebrows was that some planes still managed to take off after the Iranian missile strikes on Iraqi bases followed up by the crash of a Ukrainian plane just shortly after it had taken off.
Iranians (especially the ones still angered at how an American drone strike killed Major General Qassim Suleimani just last week) have since taken to social media to outpour their anger on their own military following its announcement and the people believe it should have been projected as revenge instead of tendering an apology.
“They were supposed to take their harsh revenge against America, not the people,” wrote Mojtaba Fathi, a journalist.
According to the statement made by the Iranian Military, the plane “took the flying posture and altitude of an enemy target” as it came close to an Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps base. It said that “under these circumstances, because of human error,” the plane “came under fire.”
Stressing further, the Military insisted that it would execute “major reform in operations of all armed forces” to ensure that such event never resurfaces. It also said that a full explanation should be expected by the general public as it had ordered the Revolutionary Guards officials to make an appearance on state media.
Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif gave his statement in which he apportioned some part of the blame on the United States, insinuating on Twitter that the event was “caused by U.S. adventurism.” The military’s statement said there had been information suggesting the United States was “preparing to aerially target sensitive defence and key sites and multiple targets in our country, and this led to even more sensitive defence posture by our antiaircraft units.
Officials of Ukraine also gave their analysis of the plane’s flight details on Friday and gave a confirmation that it hadn’t gone beyond its a normal corridor for flights out of Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport and their representative, Ukraine’s foreign minister, Vadym Prystaiko, said at a news conference.
“Our goal is to ascertain the undeniable truth,” Mr Zelensky said in a statement on Friday. “We believe this is the responsibility of the whole international community before the families of the dead and the memory of the victims of the catastrophe.”