Iran President Ebrahim Raisi’s Death In Chopper Crash | Top Points

The incident occurred on Sunday as Iranian President Ebrahim and other officials were returning in a chopper from a visit to the Azerbaijan border.

Slain Iran President Ebrahim Raisi | Photo: AP

Iran President Ebrahim Raisi and other officials including the country’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian died when their helicopter crashed as it was crossing mountain terrain amidst heavy fog in northwestern part of the country.

The incident occurred on Sunday as they were returning from a visit to the Azerbaijan border. Raisi had been at the Azerbaijani border to inaugurate the Qiz-Qalaisi Dam.

Raisi, 63, was elected president in 2021. Since assuming office, he has enforced stricter morality laws, overseen a violent suppression of anti-government demonstrations, and engaged in intense nuclear negotiations with world powers.

Earlier, Iran State television interrupted its regular programming to broadcast prayers being held nationwide for Raisi, while the country’s Interior Minister Ahmed Vahidi said one of the three helicopters had made a “hard landing”, and authorities were waiting for more information.

Here are top points on this story:

  • Israel denied its involvement in the death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash that also killed several official of his entourage.

  • India has declared a one-day state mourning on Tuesday (May 21) as a mark of respect for the Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi who died in a helicopter crash.

  • Iran’s military chief of staff has ordered a probe into the cause of the helicopter crash, according to the country’s state media.

  • The funeral ceremonies for President Raisi and his colleagues will take place on Tuesday at 9:30am local time in Tabriz, as per the country’ state media.

  • Former Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has blamed US sanctions for the crash in an interview with his country’s state television.

  • Turkey’s Transport Minister Abdulkadir Uraloglu has said the chopper that crashed did not have its signal system turned on or did not possess such a system.

  • The incident occurred during Iran President Raisi's return flight to the Iranian city Tabriz after he and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev inaugurated the Qiz Qalasi Dam on their shared border.

  • The helicopter, carrying the 63-year-old President Raisi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, and other officials, lost contact approximately 30 minutes into the flight, which sparked immediate concerns.

  • Initial reports from Iran's state media described the situation as an "accident."

  • Iran's Deputy President for Executive Affairs Mohsen Mansouri said that two members of the president's entourage had contacted rescue teams, suggesting that the incident might not have been catastrophic.

  • Iranian state media reported that Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Diplomacy Mehdi Safari claimed that the Tabriz Friday prayer leader had managed to speak with President Raisi, 63, via phone from the downed helicopter.

  • Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urged calm and assured that there would be no disruption in the country's governance.

  • Earlier, the harsh weather conditions and heavy fog had significantly hampered efforts to trace the wreckage of the crashed chopper.

  • Several countries including Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Russia, Turkey, and the European Union offered its assistance to Iran in locating the crashed chopper.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi also expressed his condolences with Iran.

  • Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani conveyed gratitude for the international solidarity and offers of help.