• Monday, June 24, 2024

ASIA

Modi condoles Iran president Raisi’s death in helicopter crash: ‘Deeply saddened’

The Iranian leader died, along with some top officials of his government, in the accident which took place in a mountainous and forested area of Iran in poor weather.

(L-R) Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi (Photo by Office of the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran via Getty Images) and Indian PM Narendra Modi (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

By: Shubham Ghosh

INDIAN prime minister Narendra Modi on Monday (20) condoled the death of Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash in his country saying he was “deeply saddened and shocked”.

In a post on X, he also said that Raisi had made significant contributions towards strengthening India-Iran bilateral relationship and that India stands with Iran in the time of sorrow.

“Deeply saddened and shocked by the tragic demise of Dr. Seyed Ebrahim Raisi, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran. His contribution to strengthening India-Iran bilateral relationship will always be remembered. My heartfelt condolences to his family and the people of Iran. India stands with Iran in this time of sorrow,” Modi wrote on X.

Read: Iran president’s helicopter makes ‘hard landing’ says state TV

The helicopter carrying Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi takes off
In this photo provided by Islamic Republic News Agency IRNA on May 19, 2024, shows the helicopter carrying Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi taking off at the Iranian border with Azerbaijan after the inauguration of the dam of Qiz Qalasi, in Aras. (Photo by ALI HAMED HAGHDOUST/IRNA/AFP via Getty Images)

Raisi died in the accident which took place in a mountainous and forested area of Iran in poor weather. Some top officials of his government also perished, including foreign minister Hossein Amir-abdollahian.

Malek Rahmati, governor of Iran’s East Azerbaijan province; Mohammad Ali Ale-Hashem, representative of the Iranian supreme leader in East Azerbaijan; and Mehdi Mousavi, head of presidential guard were also among the victims besides the helicopter’s pilot, co-pilot and crew.

They were returning from an event with the president of neighbouring Azerbaijan, Ibrahim Aliyev, when the tragedy took place. A massive search operation was launched despite an inclement weather and support was extended by countries such as Russia and international blocs such as the European Union.

Multiple Iranian media outlets released pictures of the helicopter’s wreckage. Authorities said some of the bodies were charred beyond recognition along with the aircraft.

Raisi, 63, was a former chief justice and represented conservative and hardline factions in Iranian politics. He has been in office since August 2021 and appeared to run for re-election next year.

He was also touted as a potential successor to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the 85-year-old supreme leader of the Middle Eastern nation.

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