Dead body of Iranian President recovered after fatal helicopter crash

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi died in a fatal helicopter crash on Sunday and the wreckage of the helicopter was found by rescue teams on Monday morning.


The 63-year-old President of Iran, Ebrahim Raisi, died on Sunday morning after meeting with his Azeri counterpart Ilham Aliyev at the inauguration of a dam on the Aras river near Iran's Khoda Afarin province on the border with Azerbaijan. It was claimed that the helicopter crashed due to dense fog while returning to Tehran.

The head of the Iranian Red Crescent, Pir Hossein Kolivand, told the IRIB television channel that "no trace of living passengers was found after the crashed helicopter was located". In other words, all passengers on board the helicopter died in the crash.

According to the Iranian news agency Tasnim, at least eight people were killed. In addition to President Ebrahim Raisi, the dead include Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, East Azerbaijan Governor Malek Rahmati and Tabriz Ayatollah Muhammad Ali Al-e-Hasham. The news source added that the names of two pilots and a technician on board the aircraft were not disclosed.

Red Crescent rescue workers announced this morning that they had recovered the bodies of the victims of the helicopter crash, including the President.  The bodies were said to be on their way to Tabriz.

The Iranian government said on Monday that the death of President Raisi will not cause "the slightest disturbance in the governance" of the country. "The hardworking and tireless President of the Iranian people (...) sacrificed his life for his nation," the government said.

"We assure our loyal nation that with God's help and the support of the people, there will be no disruption in the country's governance," the statement said.

Article 131 of the Iranian Constitution states that "In the event of the President's death, impeachment, resignation, absence from office for more than two months or illness (...) the First Vice President assumes the powers and responsibilities of the President, subject to the Leader's approval".

Since 2021, the First Vice-President of Iran has been Mohammad Muhbér, former president of an Iranian bank and former deputy governor of Khuzestan province in the west of the country.

With Muhbér as interim president, elections will have to be held within 50 days.

On the other hand, according to the Russian news agency TASS, the Tehran Stock Exchange (TSE) suspended trading on Sunday morning following news of the death of the country's president.

In the meantime, Iran's religious leader Ayatollah Khamenei sent condolences on the passing away of President Raisi and his entourage in a helicopter crash in northwestern Iran and declared five days of public mourning.

According to Tasnim News Agency, Khamenei appointed the first vice president as the manager of the executive power.

Pakistan declared a day of mourning on Monday following the death of the Iranian President. Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif wrote on X that "a day of mourning has been declared in Pakistan and the flag will be lowered to half-mast" in solidarity with the "brotherly" country Iran.