Iran’s President Raisi Involved in Helicopter Accident, Says State Media

Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi was involved in a helicopter accident while travelling in East Azerbaijan province on Sunday, state media reported.

State TV and the IRNA news outlet said Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, East Azberbaijan Governor Malik Rahmati, and Mohammed Ali Ale-Hashem, the imam of Tabriz, were aboard the helicopter, which suffered a “hard landing.”

Two other helicopters travelling in the convoy landed safely, municipal official Ali Zakari told the media.

Harsh fog and difficult weather conditions are hampering rescue operations in the area, which will take “some time”, state media added.

Iran’s interior ministry later confirmed the helicopte had a “hard landing” and said it was awaiting further details.

Drones and rescue teams have been sent to the site, the head of Iran’s Red Crescent told the ISNA news agency.

Other outlets gave conflicting versions of the incident, with Mehr claiming the president had landed safely in Tabriz.

The accident was reported near the city of Jolfa, on the country’s border with Azerbaijan.

Mr Raisi, 63, had been in Azerbaijan early on Sunday to inaugurate a dam with Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev.

The hard-liner, who took office in 2021, has been touted as the potential successor to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

He previously served in the judiciary, including as prosecutor and deputy prosecutor for Tehran, and is sanctioned by the US in part over his involvement in the mass execution of thousands of political prisoners in 1988.


The National News

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