Ukraine lists possible theories behind Iran plane crash, including missile strike

A handout photo made available by Ukranian Presidential Press service shows Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky lays flowers to the portraits of crew members of the Ukraine International Airlines Flight PS752 which crashed near Tehran at Boryspil International Airport in Kiev, Ukraine, 09 January 2020. EPA-EFE/STR HANDOUT

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A top Ukrainian security official on Thursday set out what he said were the four main theories for why a Ukrainian airliner crashed in Iran the previous day killing 176 people, including a possible missile strike and terrorism.

Oleksiy Danylov, secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defence Council, made his statement as an initial report by Iranian investigators said the plane, a Boeing 737-800, had been on fire immediately before it crashed.

Ukraine is looking at various possible causes of the crash, including a possible missile attack, a collision, an engine explosion or terrorism, he wrote in a Facebook post.

The crash happened hours after Iran launched missile attacks on US-led forces in Iraq, leading some to speculate that the plane may have been hit.

But an initial assessment by Western intelligence agencies was that the plane had suffered a technical malfunction and had not been brought down by a missile, five security sources – three Americans, one European and the Canadian – who asked not to be named, told Reuters.

Danylov said Ukrainian investigators in Iran wanted to search the crash site for possible debris of a Russian missile after seeing reports about its possible existence on the internet.

Read more via Jerusalem Post/Reuters

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