January 13, 2020 / 6:09 AM / 13 days ago

Maple Leaf CEO flays U.S. government after Iran plane crash

Maple Leaf Foods Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Michael McCain speaks during the annual general meeting of shareholders in Toronto April 28, 2011. REUTERS/Mike Cassese/Files

(Reuters) - Maple Leaf Foods Inc Chief Executive Officer Michael McCain criticized the U.S. government for escalating tensions in the Middle East, after an Iranian missile accidentally shot down a Ukrainian airliner killing 176 people onboard, including an employee’s family.

“A MLF colleague of mine lost his wife and family this week to a needless, irresponsible series of events in Iran. U.S. government leaders unconstrained by checks/balances, concocted an ill-conceived plan to divert focus from political woes,” McCain said in a tweet posted on the company’s Twitter account on Sunday.

"The world knows Iran is a dangerous state, but the world found a path to contain it; not perfect but by most accounts it was the right direction," he added in a series of tweets. (bit.ly/2QOdgtc)

The CEO of the packaged meat producer said the tweets were his “personal reflections”.

Iran admitted on Saturday that it accidentally shot down the plane in which 57 Canadians, mostly of Iranian descent, died.

Iran said its air defenses were fired in error while on alert after Iranian missile strikes on U.S. targets in Iraq.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Sunday told a vigil for some of those killed in the disaster that he would “pursue justice and accountability” for what happened.

Reporting by Shubham Kalia in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

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