France confirms to read black boxes of downed Ukrainian jet

Reuters – France said on Friday it would download the black boxes from a Ukrainian airliner downed by a missile in Iran in January, ending months of uncertainty over the fate of the two recorders.

The BEA air accident agency said it was acting on behalf of Iran, which is leading a formal air accident probe after acknowledging that the Boeing 737 was downed accidentally by its forces with the loss of 176 lives.

Work on repairing and downloading the cockpit voice and data recorders will begin on July 20, the BEA said, while aviation authorities in Canada, 57 of whose citizens died in the crash, said they would send a team to Paris to participate.

Reporting by Tim Hepher, David Ljunggren; Editing by Hugh Lawson