June 14th, 2024

Flight PS752 victims’ families say they’re not sorry to hear of Iran president death

By The Canadian Press on May 21, 2024.

People hold up posters of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi during a mourning ceremony for him at Vali-e-Asr square in Tehran, Iran, Monday, May 20, 2024. Members of a Canadian group representing families of those killed when Iranian officials shot down Flight PS752 in January 2020 say they are not sorry to hear of the death of the country’s president in a helicopter crash. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Vahid Salemi

Members of a Canadian group representing families of those killed when Iranian officials shot down Flight PS752 in January 2020 say they are not sorry to hear of the death of Iran’s president.

President Ebrahim Raisi and Iran’s foreign minister were found dead Monday, hours after their helicopter crashed in fog.

Iran has offered no cause for the crash nor suggested sabotage brought down the helicopter, which fell in mountainous terrain in the country’s northwest.

Kouroush Doustshenas, whose fiancée was among the 176 people killed when the 2020 flight was shot down, says Raisi is known to many as the “butcher of Tehran” and kept skies open to civilian aviation during the firing of missiles at flight PS752.

Doustshenas says Raisi was also known for his role in the 1998 mass killings of peaceful protesters, the 2019 Bloody November massacres, and a vicious crackdown on the Woman, Life, Freedom movement that began in September 2022.

Fifty-five Canadian citizens and 30 permanent residents were among the 176 people killed on the Ukrainian International Airlines flight that was shot down by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard shortly after takeoff from Tehran’s Imam Khomeini Airport on Jan. 8, 2020.

In a statement Monday, the Association of Flight PS752 Victims said, “We vehemently sought to bring (Raisi) to justice for his crimes in a fair trial so that he could face the consequences of his heinous actions. We feel that we are robbed of such an opportunity, but we are not sorry about his death.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 21, 2024.

– With files from The Associated Press.

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