Monday, 17 June

Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi confirmed dead after helicopter crash

World News
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi is confirmed dead after rescuers found a helicopter carrying him and other officials that had crashed in the mountainous northwest reaches of Iran the day before. He was 63 years old.

Raisi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian; Governor of Eastern Azerbaijan province Malek Rahmati, Tabriz’s Friday prayer Imam Mohammad Ali Alehashem as well as a pilot, copilot, crew chief, head of security and another bodyguard, were all on board, according to Iranian media. All nine have been declared dead.

"President Raisi, the foreign minisiter and all the passengers in the helicopter were killed in the crash," a senior Iranian official told Reuters.

State TV gave no immediate cause for the crash in Iran´s East Azerbaijan province.

Early Monday morning, Turkish authorities released what they described as drone footage showing what appeared to be a fire in the wilderness that they ‘suspected to be the wreckage of the helicopter.’

The coordinates listed in the footage put the fire some 12 miles south of the Azerbaijan-Iranian border on the side of a steep mountain.

State media claimed that allied Russia sent a 50-man specialist mountain rescue unit to assist the search.

The Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations confirmed it in a Telegram post.

Approximately 73 teams, plus detector dogs, were involved, per Iran’s Red Crescent.