Government of Canada honours victims on the second National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Air Disasters

January 7, 2022 – Ottawa, Ontario – Global Affairs Canada

Tomorrow marks two years since the downing of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 (Flight PS752), as well as the second National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Air Disasters. On this solemn occasion, we remember the victims of all air disasters, including Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 (Flight ET302), Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and Air India Flight 182, and stand in solidarity with all those who have lost loved ones to air disasters.

Canada continues to work with our International Coordination and Response Group partners—the United Kingdom, Sweden, and Ukraine—to ensure justice and accountability for the victims of the passengers and crew aboard Flight PS752. We stand in solidarity with the victim’s loved ones and are determined to hold Iran accountable for the downing by their military forces and to ensure Iran makes full reparations for the acts and omissions that led to the deaths of 176 innocent people.

Today, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs; the Honourable Omar Alghabra, Minister of Transport; the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, along with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and High Commissioner Ralph Goodale, met with family members of victims of Flight PS752 to reiterate their commitment to justice and inform them of progress made to date.   

In support of the families of victims of air disasters, the Government of Canada is delivering on several commitments.

Building on previously implemented measures to support families of the victims of Flight ET302 and Flight PS752, the government is developing a new pathway to permanent residence for certain family members that are outside Canada. We recognize that victims who were Canadian citizens, permanent residents or were approved to become permanent residents would have had the opportunity to build a life here in Canada with their families. The two permanent residence pathways honour their memory and support family members in Canada who have lost their loved ones.

Based on the feedback received during the consultations with family members and loved ones, the government will proceed with the formal establishment of a scholarship program in memory of victims of Flight PS752. The program is expected to disburse 176 scholarships averaging $25,000 for each beneficiary. This program will also strengthen the bonds between people through international academic exchanges. Open to both international and Canadian students, the program will aim to launch its first call for applications in the fall/winter of 2023 to 2024. In the coming weeks, the government will consult Flight ET302 family members on the scope and details of a similar scholarship initiative to honour those lost in this air disaster.

Additionally, the Government of Canada is launching a public consultation on a memorial in remembrance of those who have lost their lives in air disasters. Families and members of the public are invited to share their thoughts on the creation of a physical tribute for meaningful commemoration.

Finally, the Government of Canada is advancing the Safer Skies Initiative, working with our international partners to ensure the safety of civilian aircraft travelling in conflict zones. Canada is also working with its partners to review the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) aircraft accident investigations framework.

Together, these actions pay homage to the victims of air disasters and help to ensure that no one suffers such loss in the future. Canada will continue to remember those who were lost, and stand in solidarity with the people they loved. They will not be forgotten. 

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