New CCTV footage has revealed the moment two Iranian missiles were fired at a Ukrainian passenger jet killing all 176 aboard shortly after it took off from Tehran.
Footage shows the first missile tearing across the horizon last Wednesday and exploding against the fuselage before a second follows in its wake.
The Boeing 737 can then be seen descending in a ball of flame which grows larger as it plummets towards the ground. The footage obtained by The New York Times was filmed on a rooftop camera around four miles away from the base which Iran’s Revolutionary Guard confirmed fired the rockets.
On Tuesday night Commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh, responsible for the country’s missiles, held stilted meetings with the bereaved family of one of the victims of the strike.
CCTV footage has revealed the moment two Iranian missiles were fired at a Ukrainian passenger jet killing all 176 aboard shortly after it took off from Tehran last Wednesday
A second missile follows in the wake of the first to deliver another impact to the fuselage of the Ukrainian International Airlines to Kiev
He had previously taken responsibility and said, ‘When I found out what had happened, I wanted to die. I said, I would rather die rather than be a witness to such an incident.’
Iran has provoked fury on the streets after it initially denied shooting down the jet, which was filled with dozens of its own people, before admitting the ‘unforgivable error.’
The catastrophe has put Tehran on the back foot after it vowed revenge for the US drone strike which killed its highest ranking general Qassem Soleimani.
Iran said on Tuesday it had arrested several people over the missile strike following ‘extensive investigations.’
Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili also described British ambassador Rob Macaire – who was briefly arrested over the weekend for allegedly attending an anti-regime protest – as an ‘undesirable element.’
The plane can be seen descending in a fiery ball before crashing to the ground just minutes after take-off
Commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh (on the sofa, left), responsible for the country’s missiles, meets with bereaved family members of one of the victims
Most of those on board the plane were Iranian or Canadian-Iranian (pictured: Commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh meets with a victim’s family)
‘Our people and the international community expect him to be expelled from the country,’ Esmaili told Iran’s INSA news agency.
President Hassan Rouhani has vowed to punish those responsible and today called for a special court to be set up to probe the ‘painful and unforgivable’ mistake.
The president said ‘one person cannot be solely responsible for the plane crash’ as he vowed a thorough investigation into the disaster.
‘For our people it is very important in this incident that anyone who was at fault or negligent at any level’ face justice, he said in a televised speech.
‘Iranian armed forces admitting their mistake is a good first step … We should assure people that it will not happen again.
‘Anyone who should be punished must be punished.
‘The judiciary must form a special court with high-ranking judge and dozens of experts… The whole world will be watching.’
Ukraine says the pilots were killed immediately when the Iranian missile struck the plane just below the cockpit (the wreckage is pictured at the crash site near Tehran)
Tehran admitted Saturday that it accidentally downed the Ukraine International Airlines plane, killing all 176 people on board on Wednesday, shortly after launching missiles at bases hosting US forces in Iraq
Rouhani said his government was ‘accountable to Iranians and other nations who lost lives’, including Canada and Ukraine.
Canadian PM Justin Trudeau has demanded that Iran provide Canada with ‘full clarity’ on the airliner shootdown.
The prime minister also said he insisted to Rouhani that Canada be allowed to participate in the investigation.
Three members of a Canadian rapid deployment team flying to Tehran will have access to the plane’s wreckage and blackboxes, Iranian officials confirmed on Monday.
The Ukraine International Airlines jet came down near Tehran last Wednesday, just hours after Iran had fired missiles at US bases.
The cause of the crash was initially shrouded in mystery, with Iran insisting repeatedly that the plane had suffered a technical fault.
Iranian regime loyalists burn an effigy of British ambassador Rob Macaire – who was briefly arrested in Tehran on Saturday – as well as a US flag during a memorial in Tehran today
Iranian president Hassan Rouhani (pictured today) has vowed to punish those responsible as he called the shoot-down of the Boeing 737 an ‘unforgivable error’
When Western intelligence came down on the side of a missile strike, Tehran initially dismissed their allegations as ‘psychological warfare’ and a ‘big lie’.
But Iran finally abandoned its denials on Saturday, admitting that the Revolutionary Guards had shot down the Boeing 737 by mistake.
Ukrainian security chief Oleksiy Danilov told the BBC that the missile had hit the plane underneath the cockpit, killing the pilots instantly.
The death of Qassem Soleimani had initially united Iranians in mourning last week, but Iran’s changing story has sparked a resurgence of protests.
Anti-government protests entered a third day yesterday with dozens of demonstrators chanting slogans at a Tehran university.
The capital’s police chief claimed yesterday that the security situation in the capital was ‘fine’ despite the protests, with riot police deployed to face the protesters.
Meanwhile tensions in the region remain high and on Tuesday night a US base in northern Iraq was targeted by Soviet-made Katyusha rockets.
No casualties were reported nor did any group claim responsibility for the attack on Camp Taji which also houses around 200 British personnel.
The Canadian prime minister, at a vigil for the victims of the plane crash, was the first world leader to say Iran had downed the passenger jet