Iranian President Raisi reported dead in helicopter crash (PICS)


Monday, 20 May 2024 (09:55 IST)
Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi, the country's foreign minister and others have been found dead at the site of a helicopter crash site, state media report. Raisi was 63.
State media gave no immediate cause for the crash.
All nine people on board the helicopter died when it crashed on Monday in Iran's northwestern East Azerbaijan region, state media said.

Raisi and Foreign Minister Amir Abdollahian were traveling back from a meeting with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. The helicopter disappeared from radar on Sunday afternoon.
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi dies in air crash — media
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian died in a helicopter crash, according to media reports.
"The president of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Ebrahim Raisi, had an accident while serving and performing his duty for the people of Iran and was martyred," Iran's Mehr news agency said.
The Reuters news agency cited an Iranian official as saying that both Raisi and Amir-Abdollahian died in the crash on Monday in the northwestern East Azerbaijan region.
The government is yet to issue an official confirmation of the death.
State media reported that there were no signs of survivors at the site of the crash.
What to know about Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi
Ebrahim Raisi, 63, was elected president in 2021 after rival candidates were barred from running. Since taking office, he has faced a multitude of challenges. 
Iranian authorities launched a crackdown on dissentsince large-scale unrest erupted across the country at the end of 2022 following the death of Jina Mahsa Amini in police custody.
Last month Iran launched a missile and drone attack on Israel amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in Gaza. 
Raisi was seen as a strong contender to succeed Ali Khamenei as Iran's Supreme Leader. 
If Raisi's death is confirmed, he would be succeeded by First Vice President Mohammad Mokhber and a new presidential election would be called within 50 days.

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