Russian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin has denied claims made in some online blogs that in 1983, when he worked at the Soviet Embassy in Washington, he allegedly spoke of the Soviet Union's non-involvement in the crash of Korean Airlines flight KAL 007.
"When in 1983 I served as the second secretary of the Soviet embassy in Washington, I did not make any remarks concerning the South Korean airplane at all (the existing legend on that score is untrue). I began communicating with American and world media a little later. My first speech in the U.S. that provoked an outcry took place in the American Congress on May 1, 1986 and was dedicated to the disaster at the Chernobyl NPP [nuclear power plant]. By the way, I did not deny anything there either," Churkin said in a commentary posted on the website of the office of Russia's permanent representative to the UN.
In 1983 "it did not take the Soviet Union long to admit that the South Korean airplane had been shot down by a Soviet fighter jet, which had mistaken it for a reconnaissance airplane," he said.
According to Churkin, the blog post, which, among other issues, claims that "it was first secretary of the Soviet Embassy in the U.S. Churkin who was the first to declare in Washington about the Soviet Union's non-involvement in the destruction of the South Korean Boeing", affects his professional reputation.
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