Reports coming out of Iran today suggest that the Iranian authorities have passed a bill to compensate the families of the people who lost their lives during the downing of Ukraine International Airlines flight PS 752. The Legal Department of the President’s Office passed a bill today that will see $150,000 in compensation given to the bereaved families of the victims.
“The Ministry of Transport and Urban Development has been instructed to arrange for the payment of $ 150,000, or it’s equivalent in euros to the families of each of the victims as soon as possible and to pay the amounts to the beneficiaries based on the relevant documents,” the Legal Department announced, according to The Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) via the Tehran Times.
The compensation should be paid without bias
The document says that the compensation should be paid according to the victim’s countries’ laws and should be paid without any discrimination based on nationality, citizenship, or gender. The incident occurred on 8 January 2020, just minutes after UIA flight PS 752 took off from Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKA) on route to Kyiv Boryspil International Airport (KBP) Ukraine.
The Boeing 737-800s black box was recovered from the crash and contained a cockpit voice recording that showed that the pilots and passengers were still alive before a second missile hit the plane. All 176 passengers and crew were killed. After having denied that Iran was responsible for the crash, videos of what had happened showed a missile fired from the ground hitting the plane. Iran then came clean and said it was a”disastrous mistake” by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps.
Iran was on high alert
At the time of the incident, Iran’s air defenses were on high alert after having just fired ballistic missiles at two United States military bases in Iraq. The strike was in retaliation for an earlier American drone strike that killed top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in Bagdad.
Ukraine International Airlines flight number 752 had just taken off from Runway 29R, an hour behind schedule, at 06:12:08 local time. When turning towards Ukraine at an altitude of 2,416 meters (7,925 feet), the flight data recorder abruptly stopped working. Analysis of several videos showed that the aircraft was hit by the first of two surface-to-air missiles that knocked out its transponder. In the videos, the aircraft can be seen to be in flames before disappearing from view.
Is $150,000 enough?
Of the 167 passengers and crew members who lost their lives that day, 82 were Iranian. 63 Canadians, 11 Ukrainians, 10 Swedes, four Afghans, three Germans, and three British nationals also passed away.
The aircraft involved in the incident was a three and a half year old Boeing 737-800 with the registration number UR-PSR. It was delivered to the Ukrainian national flag carrier on 19 July 2016 and was the first Next Generation (NG) purchased by the airline. The aircraft had a stellar maintenance record and had been inspected just two days before the fatal crash.
The sum of $150,000 to each of the victims’ families does not sound like very much money. Do you think that the Ukrainian authorities should accept the offer or ask for more compensation? Please tell us what you think in the comments.