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Iran offers full consular services to the bereaved of plane crash

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The photo shows general view of the debris of the Boeing 737-800 of the Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 that crashed after take-off from Iran's Imam Khomeini International Airport on the outskirts of Tehran, January 8, 2020. (By Reuters)

Iran's Foreign Ministry says a special working group set up after the deadly crash of Ukrainian Flight 752 is ready to give full consular services to the bereaved families of the victims.

Speaking to the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) on Sunday, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi said the working group was established on Saturday on an order by President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and is ready to provide round-the-clock consular services to the families of the victims at the phone number, +98 21 61153009.

He added that necessary directions have been given to Iran's missions to issue visas for applicants from Afghanistan, Sweden, Canada, Ukraine, and Britain, among others, in this regard. Visas have already been issued for 50 Ukrainians and nine Canadians, he added.

Mousavi also said the director general of Iran's Foreign Ministry had held meetings with the Swedish and Italian ambassadors about the situation of the victims from other countries.

The Ukraine International Airlines flight, en route to Kiev and transporting mostly Iranians and Iranian-Canadians, crashed minutes after takeoff near the capital Tehran early on January 8, killing all the 176 on board. On Saturday morning, the Iranian Armed Forces issued a statement saying that the Boeing 737-800 aircraft was shot down due to human error.

Zarif said on Sunday that the foreign ministry had established a round-the-clock hotline to assist the bereaved.

The Iranian top diplomat announced the hotline in two tweets – one in Persian and one in English – to convey his deep condolences.

“As part of practical measures to assist families of victims of #PS752 tragic disaster, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has set up a hotline. It is manned 24/7. Number: +98 21 61153009.”

“Embassies have also been instructed to facilitate assistance to families/friends of victims.”

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