• Tuesday, 11 June 2024

Report: Accident involving helicopter with Iran's president on board

Report: Accident involving helicopter with Iran's president on board

Tehran, 19 May 2024 (dpa/MIA) - A helicopter with Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on board had to make an emergency landing in the west of the country on Sunday, state media reported.

It was initially unclear whether Raisi was injured in the accident.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian was also reportedly on board. Some media reported a "hard landing," others a "crash."

As a result, there is no precise information about the situation on the ground. There were accounts on social media that both the president and foreign minister were injured.

Raisi was in the Iranian province of East Azerbaijan earlier Sunday, where he met the president of neighbouring Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev. Together they inaugurated a dam.

Raisi was sworn in as Iran's new president in August 2021. He won the presidential election in June with just under 62% of the vote as the leading candidate of the political hardliners and the preferred candidate and protégé of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Born in 1960 in Mashhad in north-east Iran, Raisi is considered to be very influential within the Islamic Republic's system. He also maintains a close relationship with Khamenei.

Raisi worked in the judiciary for over three decades and was appointed head of the judiciary in 2019. He is said to have been responsible for numerous arrests and executions of political dissidents in his previous role as public prosecutor.

According to the constitution, Raisi is only number two in the country because Khamenei is the actual head of state and also has the final say in all strategic matters.

MIA file photo