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Sweden Says Iran Agrees To Compensate Families From Downing Of Ukrainian Airliner

Security officers and Red Crescent workers are seen at the site where the Ukraine International Airlines plane crashed after takeoff from Iran's Imam Khomeini Airport, on the outskirts of Tehran, on January 8.

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde says Iran has agreed that it will compensate the families of foreign victims who died when a Ukrainian airliner was shot down after taking off from Tehran's main airport in January, killing all 176 people on board.

"We have signed an agreement of mutual understanding that we will now negotiate with Iran about amends, compensation to the victims' next of kin," Linde told the Swedish news agency TT, adding the agreement was reached following talks with ministers from the countries affected by the crash.

It was unclear what sums would be paid out and when.

Iran has said in the past that it wants to negotiate directly with the victims' families.

Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 was heading to Kyiv when it was shot down by Iran's air defenses on January 8 in what Iranian officials eventually acknowledged was a "mistake."

Many of the 176 victims were Iranian-Canadians, but there were also nationals of Afghanistan, Britain, Sweden, and Ukraine on board.

Iranian forces had been on high alert at the time of the tragedy, which came hours after Iran launched missile strikes on an Iraqi military base housing U.S. troops.

The Iranian strikes were carried out in response to the killing of a top Iranian general, Qasem Soleimani, in a U.S. drone strike near Baghdad airport.

With reporting by dpa and AFP
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