Hiding something? Iran refuses to release crashed Ukrainian plane’s black box

Iran announced that it will not release the ‘black box’ from the Ukrainian Boeing 737 passenger jet, that crashed near Tehran on Wednesday, neither to Ukraine, nor Boeing.

Responding to the crash, Boeing said in a statement that it was ready to “assist in any way needed,” but the head of Iran Civil Aviation Organization said that Tehran would carry out its own investigation into the crash. He added that Ukrainian civil aviation authorities will be ‘allowed’ to be ‘present during probes’.

According to Iranian official, an investigation into the accident is ongoing and it hadn’t yet been decided where the black box would be sent for analysis.

A Boeing 737 operated by Ukraine International Airlines crashed shortly after taking off from Imam Khomeini International Airport in Tehran earlier on Wednesday, killing all 176 people on board. Ukraine initially suggested that the accident was due to mechanical failure, but later scrubbed its statement.

The Ukrainian airline said the aircraft was “in excellent condition” before its last flight from Tehran to Kiev, Evgeny Dykhne, the company’s president, told reporters in Kiev. The plane, described as one of the “best” in the company’s fleet, had undergone an inspection just two days prior.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called on the public to refrain from speculating about what may have caused the crash. Ukraine’s foreign minister confirmed that he had been in contact with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, and that both nations had agreed to coordinate their efforts to determine what caused the “terrible” crash.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry revealed that among those killed in Wednesday’s crash were 82 Iranians, 11 Ukrainians, 63 Canadians, four Afghans, three Germans, three British nationals and 10 Swedes.