Iranian President
Iran President Ebrahim Raisi. Photo credit: AFP

Search Underway After Helicopter Carrying Iranian President Raisi Crashes

4 weeks ago
1 min read

There has been an air of apprehension in Iran as a helicopter carrying the President Ebrahim Raisi and the foreign minister, Hossein Amir Abdollahian crashed on Sunday while returning from East Azerbaijan.

According to reports, Raisi was returning from Iran’s border with Azerbaijan when the incident occured. He was said to have gone to inaugurate a dam project with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev.

Reports said the crash occurred near Jolfa in Iran’s East Azerbaijan province, in the north of the country.

Iranian state television had in an earlier report, quoted officials saying the helicopter suffered “hard landing” due to bad weather, but could not specify what caused it.

The state media said three helicopters were in the Iranian president’s convoy, and the two others made it back safely.

Apart from the Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Iran’s East Azerbaijan Province Governor Malek Rahmati, and Ayatollah Mohammad Ali Ale-Hashem, the representative of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to East Azerbaijan, went on the trip with the president, according to state media.

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Energy Minister Ali Akbar Mehrabian and Housing and Transportation Minister Mehrdad Bazrpash were in the helicopters that made it back safely, the report added.

 

Rescue Underway

Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi said various rescue teams have dispatched and were trying to reach the location of the crash, but are being delayed by fog and bad weather conditions in the area.

An Aljazeera report quoted the Iranian Red Crescent saying it deployed more than 40 separate teams to the region where the incident took place on Sunday.

Uncertainty

There is an air of uncertainty as it is still unclear whether the president and others in the helicopter that crashed were safe. Rescuers were still attempting to reach the site, state TV said, adding that in addition to tens of rescue crews, there were several ambulances and drones deployed in the search.

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