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Published on Friday, January 10, 2020

FCO issues travel warning amid uncertainty about Tehran air crash

Uncertainty surrounding the crash of a Ukrainian International Airlines jet shortly after take-off from Tehran's Imam Khomeini International Airport has led to a Foreign Office travel warning.

The FCO now advises against all travel to Iran and against all air travel to, from and within the country after some western leaders suggested the plane had been shot down by an Iranian missile.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said intelligence 'from multiple sources, including our allies and our own intelligence' indicates the plane was shot down by an Iranian surface-to-air missile.

"This may well have been unintentional," he added at a press conference yesterday.

The Iranian Government denied the accusation, describing the reports as 'psychological warfare against Iran'.

The incident, which killed all 176 people on board, happened just hours after Iran carried out missile strikes on two US airbases in Iraq.

The FCO said there are heightened tensions in the region.

"Tensions between Iran and other countries could escalate rapidly. Anger inside Iran is high, following the death of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in a US strike in Baghdad on 3 January," it said.

"There is a possibility of an increased threat against Western interests and the security situation could worsen with little warning.

"There is uncertainty surrounding the crash on 8 January of a Ukrainian International Airlines flight shortly after take-off from Imam Khomeini International Airport in Tehran. If you decide to travel by air against FCO advice, contact your airline or travel company for the latest information before travelling. Flight schedules may be subject to cancellation at short notice. There are alternative land and sea-based routes to leave Iran."

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