CBS: U.S. officials confident Iran shot down passenger jet

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TEHRAN, Iran (WKYT/CBS) - U.S. officials are confident Iran shot down a Ukrainian jetliner in the hours after the Iranian missile attack on U.S. targets earlier this week, CBS News has learned. 

A rescue worker searches the scene where an Ukrainian plane crashed in Shahedshahr, southwest of the capital Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. A Ukrainian airplane carrying 176 people crashed on Wednesday shortly after takeoff from Tehran's main airport, killing all onboard. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

The Ukrainian International Airlines plane crashed Wednesday soon after takeoff from Tehran's airport, killing all 176 people on board.

The disaster has touched off mourning in both Ukraine and Canada - where most of the victims were from or headed.

It took place hours after Iran launched its missile attack on U.S. forces.

U.S. intelligence picked up signals of a radar being turned on, sources told CBS News. U.S. satellites also detected two surface-to-air missile launches, which happened shortly before the plane exploded, CBS News was told.

President Donald Trump is suggesting he believes Iran was responsible, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose country lost at least 63 citizens in the crash, said evidence indicates the plane was struck by a surface-to-air missile.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the same.

All three said the shootdown may well have been a mistake, coming amid the missile launches and high tension after a U.S. drone strike killed an Iranian Revolutionary Guard general.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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