Iran admits it shot down Ukrainian airliner, sparking protests in Tehran

Iran admits it shot down Ukrainian airliner, sparking protests in Tehran

The latest protests in Iran come just weeks after authorities used deadly violence to quell anti-government demonstrations that began in mid-November after Tehran announced that gasoline prices in the country would be dramatically increased.

A day earlier, protests broke out in several Iranian cities when senior officials admitted that Ukrainian International Airlines Flight PS752 had, indeed, been shot down by an Iranian antiaircraft missile shortly after it took off from Tehran's Imam Kohmeini International Airport on January 8.

A Member of Parliament Ahmad Alireza Beygi made the remarks in an interview with FNA and pointed to today's non-plenary session of the Parliament and added, "in this session, IRGC Chief Salami stated that after IRGC's missile attack on the United States military base in Iraq's Ain al-Assad, multilayer predictions were made that if American forces committed countermeasures against Iran, we would have necessary predictions and plans".

Iran-U.S. tensions have remained high, with Trump accusing Iran of planning attacks on four U.S. embassies, necessitating the drone strike last weekend that killed Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.

Unverified social media footage showed clapping and chanting protesters in Tehran's Azadi square - and reports of clashes with security forces. "With the current mechanism, there is no hope of reform", she said.

Rouhani expressed his condolences to the Ukrainian people as well as to the relatives of the victims, the Ukrainian president's office said in a statement.

The statement, signed by 186 members of Majles and read out in the Iranian parliament on Sunday, has praised the IRGC in full length. Protests were also held in the city of Isfahan and elsewhere.

However, as the USA and Canada urged Iran to come clean about the cause of the crash, a statement from the Iranian military accepted that the plane had been shot down by mistake.

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Other protests were reported at Sharif University of Technology.

The University confirmed that six students were on the plane at the time of the crash. He added, "More importantly, the US is watching".

At the protests, the U.K.'s ambassador to Iran, Robert Macaire, was arrested for "inciting" protesters, but was released after a few hours, according to Iran's Tasnim news agency. Eighty-two people on board were Iranian. "There cannot be another massacre of peaceful protesters, nor an internet shutdown". Alaeddin Boroujerdi, a member of Iran's parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy, accused the ambassador of organizing protests and called for his expulsion.

"They condemned Iran's arrest of the UK Ambassador to Tehran as a violation of worldwide law", Johnson's spokesman said in a statement.

Demonstrators are calling on the country's leaders to resign.

Mehdi Karroubi, an opposition activist under house arrest, lashed out at Khamenei himself, saying that as commander in chief he was "directly responsible".

The prime minister also called for a de-escalation in U.S. -Iraq tensions after speaking to President Trump he said in a press conference on Saturday. In 2017, demonstrators chanted, "Death to the dictator!" The commander added that there were rumors the United States had launched cruise missiles into Iran and air defense systems were not only added to Tehran but that they were all ready to launch with the push of a button.

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