Jan 13, 2020

By Jane Brown

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Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne says Iran has approved visas for eight more Canadian representatives who are travelling to the country today to help probe the downing of a Ukrainian jetliner.

Of the 176 people killed when Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 was shot down by Iranian forces last Wednesday, 138 were bound for Canada, and 57 were Canadian citizens.

Two experts from the Transportation Safety Board and six members of Canada’s standing rapid deployment team will join other Canadian officials in providing consular assistance to the families of the victims, including supporting repatriation of remains and helping to identify victims.

Iranians students chant slogans as they demonstrate following a tribute for the victims of Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737 in front of the Amirkabir University in the capital Tehran, on January 11, 2020. – Iranian police dispersed students chanting “radical” slogans during a gathering in Tehran to honour the 176 people killed when an airliner was mistakenly shot down, Fars news agency reported. AFP correspondents said hundreds of students had gathered early in the evening at Amir Kabir University, in downtown Tehran, to pay respects to those killed in the air disaster. (Photo by ATTA KENARE / AFP)

Demonstrations have been taking place in Tehran, against the Islamic Republic and it’s downing of the Ukrainian jetliner last Wednesday.

Online videos of the protests near Tehran’s Freedom Square appear to show tear gas being fired on what appears to be a peaceful crowd, causing people to turn and run away as gunfire is heard in the background.

Meantime, vigils continue to be held in cities across the country to remember the victims of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, 57 of whom were Canadians, with dozens more having had ties to Canada.

More than 2000 people gathered in Edmonton yesterday for a memorial, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who told those gathered, Canadians stand united.

And hundreds attended U of T’s Convocation Hall Sunday for an emotional vigil in memory of the Canadians who died when a Ukrainian jet was downed by a missile in Iran.

Six students from the university were among those killed.

Premier Doug Ford, Toronto Mayor John Tory and Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland all commended the victims for their contributions to Canadian society.

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