Ukraine has said its first round of talks with Iran in Kiev over the fall of a Ukrainian airliner in January was "constructive", but said it was too early to say what compensation Tehran would agree to pay.
Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Friday that an Iranian delegation had agreed to the terms of the next round of talks, which - according to the Ukrainian prosecutor's office - was scheduled for October.
“Of course, if the negotiations with Iran are not successful, then we will go to international courts and I have absolutely no doubt that we will bring Iran to justice. But that's plan B, ”Kuleba said.
“And Plan A is negotiations with Iran and the solution of all these problems and the payment of compensation. We saw that Iran was ready for a serious and substantial conversation, ”he said.
Abbas Mousavi, spokesman for Iran's foreign ministry, told Iranian news agency IRNA that his country was "in principle" ready to pay damages to Ukraine.
“We have agreed in principle, but the matter is taking a long time,” he said.
He also said that the exact time of the payments was yet to be determined and that there were several technical and legal issues left to be considered and discussed.
The Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) Boeing 737 airliner was shot down by the Iranian Air Force shortly after takeoff on January 8, killing all 176 people on board.
Iran initially blamed the crash on a technical glitch, but later admitted to unintentionally downing the airliner amid heightened tensions with US forces in neighboring Iraq.
In its final report on the crash in mid-July, the Iranian aviation agency referred to "human error", saying a faulty radar system was causing communication problems with the responsible military unit.
Iran handed over the black boxes of the aircraft's cockpit to France. They are currently being analyzed by the French aviation security authorities.