Two U.S. officials said Thursday it was “highly likely” that an Iranian anti-aircraft missile downed a Ukrainian jetliner late Tuesday, killing all 176 people on board.
The crash came just a few hours after Iran launched a ballistic missile attack against Iraqi military bases housing U.S. troops amid a confrontation with Washington over the U.S. drone strike that killed an Iranian Revolutionary Guard general last week. The officials, citing U.S. intelligence, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive information. They had no immediate information on intent. President Donald Trump suggested that he believes Iran was responsible and wouldn't directly lay the blame on Iran, but dismissed their claims that it was a mechanical issue - and denied any U.S. responsibility.' Ukraine, meanwhile, said it considered a missile strike as one of several possible theories for the crash, despite Iran's denials.The Iranian report suggests that a sudden emergency struck the Boeing 737 operated by Ukrainian International Airlines early on Wednesday morning, when it crashed, just minutes after taking off.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday she will "soon'' transmit articles of impeachment against Trump, but warned that Senate Republicans are rushing to acquittal without a fair trial. Pelosi brushed back GOP claims that Democrats are afraid to send the impeachment case to the Senate. It's now more than three weeks since the House impeached Trump on charges of abuse and obstruction. The standoff over Trump's impeachment trial deepened this week as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said there will be “no haggling” with Democrats as Pelosi demands for more details and witnesses. Today on AirTalk, we get the latest politics updates with Bloomberg’s Anna Edgerton.
With files from the Associated Press