Iran arrests several people over missile strike on passenger plane

Iranian demonstrators hold placards bearing the images of slain military commander Qasem Soleimani and Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in front of the British embassy in the capital Tehran

Protesters, with students at the forefront, have held demonstrations against the establishment since Saturday, some met by a violent police crackdown.

She acknowledged that the upcoming probe will put a spotlight on the actions of the Iranians.

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday that everyone responsible for the accidental shooting down of a Ukrainian airliner must be punished.

Canadian investigators flying to Tehran on Monday will access the wreckage and black boxes from a Ukranian jetliner downed by a missile strike last week, officials said. He did not say how many individuals had been detained or name them.

Most of the 176 people aboard the plane were Iranian and Canadian citizens.

Long-standing US-Iran tensions have soared since January 3 when missiles fired from a US drone killed a top Iranian commander, Qasem Soleimani, near Baghdad's airport.

Trump precipitated growing tensions with Iran in May 2018 by pulling out of a deal under which sanctions were eased in return for Iran curbing its nuclear program.

The authorities killed hundreds of demonstrators in a crackdown two months ago, in what was probably the worst anti-government unrest since the revolution. In Iraq and Lebanon, governments backed by pro-Iran armed groups have also faced mass protests.


Frustrated Iranians in Tehran and other cities across the country staged protests over the weekend, chanting anti-government slogans. In an audio recording broadcast by the BBC Persian service, Faezeh encouraged Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to step down to allow structural changes to take place. Cracking down on the protesting public - that is also driven by domestic woes - is not going to help the regime.

Maple Leaf Foods chief executive Michael McCain said his colleague's wife and son were among the 57 Canadians who died.

He said Ukraine's investigators believe the rocket that shot down the airliner was a Russian-made Tor missile.

The TSB's director of investigations, Natacha Van Themsche, said one of the main questions was why Iran did not shut down the airspace around Tehran, given the tensions created by Iran's missile attack on Iraqi bases housing U.S. troops earlier on the day of the tragedy. "Innocents bear the brunt of it and it is a reminder why all of us need to work so hard on de-escalation, moving forward to reduce tensions and find a pathway that doesn't involve further conflict and killing".

Incidentally, on the same day Trudeau was giving this interview, Trump tweeted that "it doesn't really matter" whether Soleimani posed an imminent threat to the U.S.

The incident raised questions about why Iran did not shut down its worldwide airport or airspace the day it was bracing for USA military retaliation.

He added that the global community has been "very, very clear about needing to have a non-nuclear Iran" but also in "managing the tensions in the region that are brought about by USA actions as well".

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