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Foreign Minister Says Ukraine Will Not Make Compromise With Iran If Humiliating To Victims

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba gives a joint press conference with his German counterpart Heiko Maas (unseen) after bilateral discussions in Berlin on June 2, 2020.

Following the recent bilateral talks with Iran concerning compensation for the victims of Flight PS752 downed in February by Iran's Revolutionary Guard, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says that Ukraine will not make any compromise that will humiliate the victims of the tragedy or fail to satisfy their relatives’ demands.

Kuleba made the remarks during an interview with Ukraine's National Radio on Friday.

"We will always remember the grief of this tragedy but we can turn the page in Kiev-Tehran relations if justice is served," Kuleba said. He also maintained that compensation for the victims can only be negotiated once all details about the incident are clarified.

On January 8, 2020, the IRGC fired two missiles at the Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 shortly after it took off from Tehran's Imam Khomeini International Airport. All 176 passengers onboard the plane were killed in the crash.

Iran did not admit that the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps was responsible for the deadly attack until three days after the crash.

On Saturday, Iranian ambassador to Kiev Manouchehr Moradi responded to a tweet by Radio Farda reporter Anna Rajskaya quoting Kuleba's statement about Ukraine's stance, Moradi tweeted that, following "constructive and fruitful negotiations" in Kiev, any compromise on compensation will adhere to international regulations. The compromise will be "according to commitments of conventions" of which Iran is a member, he said.

In another tweet in Persian, Moradi wrote, "Iran will doubtlessly act with respect to the victims and their families, according to the conventions of which it is a member.”

Rajskaya also tweeted directly to Moradi to ask if Iran plans to reveal truthful details about the downing of the plane, and the timeline for the release of that information. “You know you have the burden to prove it was a human error,” she wrote. “Repeating this all over again doesn't answer the questions.”

"Bilateral [talks] aim to answer all questions,” Moradi responded. “Everything [will be] revealed and [there is] nothing to hide. No doubt, we and our Ukrainian friends are in [the] right path.”

Ukrainian diplomats have said repeatedly that they seek the truth first, followed by compensation.

Ukrainian international affairs expert Dmytro Sengiriyov told Radio Farda that he believes that the only reason Iran has been hiding the facts about the crash is that the plane was downed "intentionally.”

According to Sengiriyov, Iran's explanations about the downing of the plane happening unintentionally seem unacceptable. "All the explanations offered by Iran so far have been meaningless and useless, whether they were about the mistakes in the settings of the Tor missile system that fired at the plane, or about the operator mistaking the Boeing for a missile,” he said.