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HomeInternational NewsPresident Rais, Top Officials Killed in Iran Helicopter Crash

President Rais, Top Officials Killed in Iran Helicopter Crash

Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi, aged 63, has died in a helicopter crash, as reported by Iranian news outlets on Monday.

Mr Raisi’s helicopter and two more helicopters were en route to Tabriz City on Sunday after he inaugurated the Qiz Qalasi Dam at the border with the Azerbaijan Republic.

Foreign minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, East Azarbaijan Province’s Governor Malek Rahmati, and Mehdi Mousavi, the head of Mr Raisi’s guard team, were also on board the crashed aircraft.

Mohammad Ali Al-e-Hashem, the Supreme Leader’s representative in the province, also accompanied them.

Local officials at the crash site confirmed the death of Mr Raisi and his entourage.

The Iranian government said it would soon release an official statement.

The helicopter reportedly suffered a “hard landing” near Jolfa, a city bordering Azerbaijan, about 600km (375 miles) northwest of Tehran, the Iranian capital.

The crash occurred just weeks after Iran launched a drone-and-missile attack on Israel following a deadly strike on its diplomatic compound in Damascus.

Raisi, a hardliner, became president in 2021 in an uncompetitive election. Before his presidency, he was the chief justice and oversaw a period of increased repression against youth-led protests against clerical rule.

He was considered the second-most powerful figure in Iran after Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The Iranian Constitution mandates that, in the case of the president’s death, the first vice president assumes office with the approval of the Supreme Leader.

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