Iran president helicopter crash: rescuers search for Ebrahim Raisi

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Helicopter carrying Iran President Ebrahim Raisi crashes. Rescuers launch search operation amid concerns for his safety.

Helicopter Carrying Iranian President Raisi Crashes Amid Bad Weather Near Azerbaijan Border

 

Iran president helicopter crash rescuers search for Ebrahim Raisi

Rescuers are searching for Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian after their helicopter reportedly crashed in a mountainous region near the Iranian-Azerbaijani border amid adverse weather conditions.

 

The helicopter was traveling in Iran's East Azerbaijan province after Raisi's visit to Azerbaijan when it crashed due to dense fog and challenging weather, described initially as a "hard landing."

 

International Reactions and Offers of Assistance

 

Countries worldwide have expressed concern and offered assistance. Russia, Turkey, China, and several Gulf states, including Saudi Arabia and Qatar, have extended offers of support, with Turkey deploying a night vision search-and-rescue helicopter. Russia has sent emergency equipment, including two planes and a helicopter, and around 60 personnel. The European Commission activated its satellite mapping service to aid in the search efforts.

 

Iranian Response and Search Efforts

 

Iran's Red Crescent Society (IRCS) has deployed four rescue teams near the crash site, which is described as "rocky" and "hilly." However, poor weather conditions have hampered progress. IRCS chief Pirhossein Koulivand stated that the challenging terrain and weather were significant obstacles.

 

Iran's state-run news agency Irna reported that a Turkish drone detected a heat source believed to be the helicopter's wreckage, about 20 kilometers south of the Azerbaijan-Iranian border on a steep mountainside. Rescuers are rushing to the scene based on the provided coordinates.

 

Statements from Iranian Officials

 

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei reassured the nation, stating that there would be no disruption to state affairs. He urged citizens not to worry, despite the concerning information coming from the crash site. Iranian Army Chief of Staff Maj Gen Mohammad Bagheri affirmed that all military resources were being utilized for the search and rescue operation.

 

Public Reaction

 

In Tehran, citizens have been praying for the president's safety. One resident likened the tense atmosphere to the period following the death of revered Revolutionary Guards commander Qasem Soleimani. Public prayers and vigils are being held, with many expressing hope for Raisi and his entourage's safe return.

 

Background on President Ebrahim Raisi

 

Ebrahim Raisi, a hardliner elected in 2021, has been instrumental in steering Iran towards the conservative values of the Islamic Republic’s revolutionary founders. Known for his aggressive foreign policy stance, Raisi's potential demise could impact the country's leadership dynamics, particularly concerning the future succession of the 85-year-old Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

 

Ongoing Search and Uncertainty

 

As of now, conflicting reports persist regarding the status and location of the helicopter. While Iranian state TV reported finding the helicopter, the Red Crescent has denied these claims. The situation remains fluid, with rescue teams continuing their efforts amid worsening weather conditions.


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CRN News Update - Latest Breaking News: Iran president helicopter crash: rescuers search for Ebrahim Raisi
Iran president helicopter crash: rescuers search for Ebrahim Raisi
Helicopter carrying Iran President Ebrahim Raisi crashes. Rescuers launch search operation amid concerns for his safety.
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