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Iran makes arrests following 'unforgivable' downing of Ukrainian passenger jet

An Iranian woman walks past a poster reading in Persian 'we are all in pain and sympathize' to honor the victims of Ukrainian passenger jet shot down last week. Source: EPA

Arrests have been made over the downing of a Ukrainian plane that killed all 176 people on board, Iran's judiciary says.

Iran's judiciary says arrests have been made over the shooting down of a Ukrainian plane that killed all 176 people on board.

"Extensive investigations have taken place and some individuals are arrested," the judiciary spokesman, Gholamhossein Esmaili, said on Tuesday.

Rescue teams work amidst debris after a Ukrainian plane carrying 176 passengers crashed near Imam Khomeini airport in the Iranian capital Tehran.
Rescue teams work amidst debris after a Ukrainian plane carrying 176 passengers crashed near Imam Khomeini airport in the Iranian capital Tehran.
Getty Images

He was quoted by Iranian state media but did not say how many individuals have been detained or name them.

Iran's president on Tuesday called for a special court to be set up to probe the downing of the plane last week just after takeoff from Tehran.

Iran, which initially dismissed allegations that a missile had brought down the jetliner, acknowledged that its Revolutionary Guard had shot down the plane by mistake.

Rouhani called the incident "a painful and unforgivable" mistake and promised that his administration would pursue the case "by all means."

Iranians light candles for victims of Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 during as they protest in front of the Amir
Iranians light candles for victims of Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 during as they protest in front of the Amir Kabir University in Tehran.
AAP

Iran shot down the plane when it was bracing for possible US retaliation for a ballistic missile attack on two military bases housing US troops in Iraq. No one was hurt in that attack, which was carried out to avenge the stunning killing of Revolutionary Guard General Qassem Soleimani in an American airstrike in Baghdad.

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