Sunday, February 23, 2020
ADVT 
National

PM Trudeau Insists Iran Respect Families' Wishes When It Comes To Burials

The Canadian Press, 21 Jan, 2020
  • PM Trudeau Insists Iran Respect Families' Wishes When It Comes To Burials

OTTAWA - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada is insisting Iran respect the wishes of families when it comes to burying those who died when a passenger jet was shot down outside Tehran, noting doing so would also respect the principles of Islam.

 

"We recognize that it is a challenge that Iran does not recognizes double citizenship, but the focus that we've had on supporting the families has been to ensure that the families' wishes are respected in regards to burials, in regards to next steps, and that is what we have been insisting on with Iran," Trudeau said Tuesday in Winnipeg as he wrapped up a three-day cabinet retreat.

 

"Respecting the wishes of the families lines up not with a question of citizenship, but it lines up also with international laws and practice and with principles around Islam for burials," Trudeau said. "So we've been insisting on that with Iran and that is what we are hoping they will continue to do."

 

All 176 people on board the Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752 were killed when the it crashed outside Tehran earlier this month after being hit by two Iranian surface-to-air missiles.

 

Ottawa has confirmed that included 57 Canadian citizens and 29 permanent residents of Canada.

 

The Canadian Press has independently confirmed at least 90 victims with ties to Canada, many of them students and professors returning after spending the December break visiting relatives in Iran.

 

On Monday, however, Iran's aviation authority issued a report that said the jetliner was carrying five Canadian nationals. The report says the figures reflected the passports used by passengers to board the aircraft.

 

That has raised concerns the bodies won't be allowed out of the country for those families wishing for a burial in Canada.

 

Iran is a majority-Muslim country, where most people are members of the Shia denomination. It is customary for remains to be buried as soon as possible after death.

 

On Tuesday, Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said a number of victims have already had their remains buried in Iran, according to the wishes of the family, but that a number of families have also said they would like to bury their loved ones in Canada.

 

"We are facilitating that, obviously, so that people can get closure," Champagne said in Winnipeg.

 

He also said Iranian authorities have assured Canada they would respect families' wishes.

 

"We are obviously following family by family," he said.

 

Meanwhile, Canada and its allies are pushing Iran to release the black boxes from the jetliner to another country that can quickly download its crucial flight data.

 

Trudeau suggested that sending them to France would be a good idea.

 

"The black boxes are key to the investigation and there are rules around making sure that they are analysed quickly and properly in cases such as these. It is not simply a question of having the right experts in place to analyse the black boxes," Trudeau said Tuesday.

 

"There has been broad consensus in the international community that France would be the right place to send those boxes, but we continue to pressure Iran to do just that," said Trudeau.

 

Champagne said earlier Tuesday that request also emerged from his conference call on Monday with counterparts from Britain, Sweden, Afghanistan and Ukraine, all of which lost citizens in the crash of Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752.

 

It was the first follow-up conversation of the so-called International Co-ordination and Response Group for victims of PS752 since Champagne hosted its inaugural meeting in London last week.

 

Canada pushed to form the group to add weight and unity to the international effort to ensure Iran's co-operation after its Revolutionary Guards shot down the passenger plane earlier this month.

 

A summary of Champagne's call with representatives from the response group says Iran is co-operating with foreign experts in the investigation, but also emphasizes the need for Iran to allow a thorough and credible international investigation.

 

"Members of the ICRG call on Iran to move the black boxes to a facility with all of the technology and expertise required to quickly and reliably download and analyse the data without delay," the summary says.

 

"Iran has indicated it is willing to do so."

 

On Sunday, Champagne wrote to his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif — two days after they met face to face in Oman — to stress Canada's view that the black boxes should be sent quickly for analysis by experts in either France or Ukraine.

 

A preliminary report released Monday by Iran's Civil Aviation Organization said it needs technical assistance from France and the United States to analyse the data.

 

The black boxes sustained physical damage, but their memory is intact after the flight was hit by two missiles within three minutes of taking off from Tehran's airport on Jan. 8, the report says.

 

MORE National ARTICLES

Lineups Outside Grocery Stores In St. John's As State Of Emergency Hits Day 5

Lineups Outside Grocery Stores In St. John's As State Of Emergency Hits Day 5

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - Residents of St. John's, N.L., were lining up for food today as supermarkets opened for the first time since last week's massive blizzard to allow people to restock supplies.

 

 

Lineups Outside Grocery Stores In St. John's As State Of Emergency Hits Day 5

Liberals Aim To Find Common Ground When Parliament Resumes Next Week

Liberals Aim To Find Common Ground When Parliament Resumes Next Week

"Canadians at our best, in difficult times, are there for each other," Trudeau said Tuesday in Winnipeg after wrapping up a three-day meeting of his federal cabinet.

 

 

Liberals Aim To Find Common Ground When Parliament Resumes Next Week

Iran Has Asked For Technical Help On Black Boxes In Downed Plane

Iran Has Asked For Technical Help On Black Boxes In Downed Plane

Iran needs technical assistance from France and the United States to analyze data from the Ukrainian jetliner that was accidentally shot down, says a preliminary report released by the country's National Aviation Authority on Monday.

 

 

Iran Has Asked For Technical Help On Black Boxes In Downed Plane

Trudeau Stays Mum On Sussexes' Security Costs As Harry Returns To B.C.

Trudeau Stays Mum On Sussexes' Security Costs As Harry Returns To B.C.

At a news conference in Winnipeg today, Trudeau says discussions on the matter are ongoing, adding he has not spoken to the Queen about it.

 

 

Trudeau Stays Mum On Sussexes' Security Costs As Harry Returns To B.C.

Allegations Against Huawei Executive Meng Wanzhou Not Fraud In Canada: Defence

Allegations Against Huawei Executive Meng Wanzhou Not Fraud In Canada: Defence

Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou should not be extradited to the United States to face fraud charges because her alleged misconduct doesn't amount to fraud in Canada, says her lawyer.

Allegations Against Huawei Executive Meng Wanzhou Not Fraud In Canada: Defence

Canada, Allies Push Iran To Co-Operate On Ukraine Plane's Black Boxes

Canada, Allies Push Iran To Co-Operate On Ukraine Plane's Black Boxes

 Canada and its allies are pushing Iran to move the black boxes from the Ukrainian jetliner it shot down to a facility that can quickly download its crucial flight data.

Canada, Allies Push Iran To Co-Operate On Ukraine Plane's Black Boxes

PrevNext