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Iran Admits It Mistakenly Shot Down Plane Last Week, Sparking Protests

HeadlineJan 13, 2020

Iranian protesters have taken to the streets for a third day after the Iranian military acknowledged it accidentally shot down a Ukrainian airliner last week, killing all 176 people on board. Iran initially denied downing the plane, but then Iran’s Revolutionary Guard took responsibility for what authorities described as a “disastrous mistake.” The plane headed to Kiev was downed just hours after Iranian forces fired 22 rockets at military bases in Iraq housing U.S. troops in retaliation for the U.S. assassination of Iranian commander General Qassem Soleimani. There are reports Iranian forces have fired live ammunition and tear gas to disperse the protesters. Britain’s ambassador to Tehran, Robert Macaire, was briefly detained in Iran, with officials claiming he participated in protests over the downed jet. Ambassador Macaire denies being at the protests. The victims of the plane crash included 82 Iranians and 57 Canadians. Among those killed was indigenous Iranian Ph.D. student Ghanimat Azhdari.

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