Iran is entirely innocent of any and all accusations it tried to hide the causes of the downing of Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) Flight 752 last week, Major General Hossein Salami said on Sunday.
Despite footage from the site of the disaster showing bulldozers clearing the area while locals picked over baggage and human remains, the Revolutionary Guards’ top commander denied any evidence had been tampered with.
He instead maintains the accusations are all based on a mix-up and psychological warfare by the U.S. and its Middle East forces.
“We didn’t touch anything,” Salami told parliament on Sunday.
“We didn’t move the wreckage of the aircraft, we didn’t change the scene, we didn’t move the air defence system, and we didn’t (alter) the radar readings,” he said.
Salami’s claims are in direct opposition to what others saw, as Breitbart News reported.
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) January 9, 2020
CBS crew just visited the #Ukrainian airlines crash site west of Tehran. Nine am local time. Virtually all pieces of the plane were removed yesterday – say locals. Scavengers now picking site clean. No security. Not cordoned off. No sign of any investigators. pic.twitter.com/hhNJyokhjq
— Elizabeth Palmer (@elizapalmer) January 10, 2020
Salami said any confusion was caused directly by the U.S. and its secret modus operandi in baffling the honest investigations of the Iranian people.
“After the assassination and martyrdom of our beloved commander [Lt. Gen. Qasem Soleimani] and his comrades [by U.S. forces in Iraq], we found ourselves in the psychological atmosphere of an unknown war with the United States,” Salami said.
He then confessed shock at the accident and offered the lives of his children in repentance, saying he had never felt more shame in his life.
“I swear on the life of my children that we [in the IRGC] have no other wish but to be torn into pieces for the sake of the security, welfare and peace of our people,” he said.
The Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737 was shot down shortly after it took off from Tehran before dawn on Wednesday, killing all 176 passengers and crew on board.
In the days after the tragedy, General Salami vowed Iran would seek revenge against the U.S. that “will be hard, firm, regrettable, decisive and complete.”