Iran insists that the crash of an airliner just minutes after leaving Tehran international airport was nothing to do with its missile strikes against the air bases in Iraq.
All 176 people on board the Ukraine International Airlines plane – including three Britons – died in the crash.
Iranian media says technical problems were to blame, but Ukraine has not ruled out the possibility that the plane was hit by a missile.
Sky’s diplomatic editor Dominic Waghorn reports.
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In This Story: Iran
Iran is home to one of the world’s oldest civilizations, beginning with the formation of the Elamite kingdoms in the fourth millennium BC. The Iranian Revolution established the current Islamic Republic in 1979.
Iran’s political system combines elements of a presidential democracy and an Islamic theocracy. Iran is a founding member of the UN, ECO, OIC, and OPEC. It is a major regional and middle power and has large reserves of fossil fuels — including the world’s largest natural gas supply and the third largest proven oil reserves.
The country’s rich cultural legacy is reflected in part by its 22 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Historically a multi-ethnic country, Iran remains a pluralistic society comprising numerous ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups, the largest being Persians, Azeris, Kurds, Mazandaranis and Lurs.