Ukraine plane crash victim families offered life-time benefits

Victim families of a Ukrainian plane crash that happened in January last year near the Iranian capital Tehran have been offered with life-time benefits by Iran’s Foundation of Martyrs and Veterans Affairs.

The Foundation, known as Bonyad Shahid, said on Sunday that it will provide benefits, including monthly pensions, cheap loans and other privileges, to a total of 127 families whose members had been onboard the Ukraine International Airlines plane when it was accidentally shot down on January 8 2020 minutes after taking off from an airport near Tehran.

“From 148 passengers some were foreigners and in total and with the consent of the families some 127 dossiers have been designated as having the position of martyrs,” said Bonyad’s director Saeid Ohadi, adding that victim families, some of them residing outside Iran, have been contacted over the issue.

The announcement comes several days after the Iranian government announced it had decided the amount of compensation for the families of the victims of the crash.

The government’s legal department said on December 30 that families of all 176 passengers onboard the plane, regardless of their nationality, will receive $150,000 each as damages for the mistaken shooting down of the plane by the Iranian air defense forces.

The incident came hours after Iran fired missiles at a military base in Iraq hosting American forces in response to a US airstrike on January 3 that had killed a top Iranian general and his Iranian and Iraqi companions just outside the airport in the Iraqi capital Baghdad.

Iran has accepted full responsibility for the Ukraine plane crash incident while offering maximum protection for families of the victims.

In his Sunday announcement, Ohadi suggested that some families of the victims had refused to accept the benefits offered by Bonyad Shahid.

“What is certain is that the martyrs of this incident do not differ from other martyrs and Bonyad Shahid is honored to offer its services to all,” said Ohadi.