News ID: 281062
Published: 0123 GMT February 25, 2021

UN expert report on Ukraine flight based on 'manipulated, biased' data: Iran

UN expert report on Ukraine flight based on 'manipulated, biased' data: Iran

Iran’s Foreign Ministry said a UN official’s report on last year’s mistaken downing of a Ukrainian airliner over Iran’s skies lacks credibility as it is based on distorted information.

Spokesman of the Foreign Ministry Saeed Khatibzadeh said on Wednesday that the contents of the report showed that “the information that she (the UN official) had been given and formed the basis of the text were manipulated, error-ridden, biased, and irrelevant,” Press TV reported.

Iran on Tuesday made public the text of a 45-page report by Agnes Callamard, the United Nations special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, she had forwarded to the Islamic Republic two months ago.

It concerns the incident last January that saw an Iranian air defense unit mistakenly shooting down Flight 752 of the Ukrainian International Airlines shortly after it took off from Tehran en route to Kiev.

The operator had mistaken the Boeing 737-800 with a cruise missile at a time when Iran’s air defense systems were at the highest level of alert hours after the country had launched missiles on a major US base in Iraq in retaliation for the assassination of prominent Iranian commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani five days earlier.

Callamard alleges vaguely in her report, “there are many high-level officials who should be charged” over the incident, and claims that the tragedy amounts to “profound and serious indictment” of the country’s civil and military authorities.

‘Report contains no evidence, devised rashly’

Khatibzadeh, however, underlined how the report had failed to “provide any credible evidence” for the accusations that it throws, adding that the document seemed to manifest a “rash effort” on Callamard’s part to address the matter.

Further condemning on Callamard’s “immature and groundless” intervention in the matter, the spokesman also noted that her sphere of authority essentially failed to give her jurisdiction over the matter.

The UN official’s intervention, meanwhile, threatened to adversely affect the available and official legal means to properly address the incident, Khatibzadeh said.

He also underlined that Iran was not in default of any of its obligations in the area as it had timely devised and circulated its technical report on the tragedy.

Iranian judicial authorities were also expected to issue an indictment for the suspects in the incident, he said, adding that the relevant legal proceedings had already been launched.

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