Iran’s president’s latest death: Ebrahim Raisi’s funeral procession underway as US says he had ‘blood on his hands’

Mourners surround truck carrying remains of Iran’s president

A funeral procession for the late Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi took place on Tuesday in the city of Tabriz, near the site where his helicopter crashed on Sunday afternoon.

Tens of thousands of people attended the event in the capital of Iran’s East Azerbaijan province, which is expected to be one of several processions across the country in the coming weeks. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is expected to lead congregational funeral prayers in Tehran after another procession in the holy city of Qom.

Despite the huge turnout, nationwide mourning for the hardline leader has been muted. Raisi, nicknamed the “Butcher of Tehran” for his role in the execution of anti-regime protesters in the 1980s, also presided over a cruel crackdown on new protests in 2022 and last year.

US State Department spokesman Matt Miller said Raisi “has blood on his hands” for his role in cracking down on dissent.

He described the former hardline cleric as “a brutal participant in the repression of the Iranian people for almost four decades.”

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What the sudden death of Iran’s president will mean for the Middle East and beyond

There are a number of unanswered questions surrounding the helicopter crash that killed Ebrahim Raisi, but one thing is clear, writes Kim Sengupta: the hardline establishment will not voluntarily loosen its grip on power:

Maroosha MuzaffarMay 22, 2024 05:30

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Who is Mohammad Mokhber? The interim president who will lead Iran for the next 50 days

Raisi, his Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and two senior local officials were traveling in a helicopter with their security team when the plane crashed in Iran’s northwestern mountainous region on Sunday.

Read the full story here:

Maroosha MuzaffarMay 22, 2024 05:00

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Watch the funeral of Iranian President Ebrahim Rasi following a fatal helicopter crash

Iran’s president, the country’s foreign minister and several other officials were found dead on Monday, hours after their helicopter crashed in a foggy, mountainous region in the country’s northwest, Iranian state media reported.

Maroosha MuzaffarMay 22, 2024 04:30

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US Statement on the Death of Iranian President Raisi and Others in Helicopter Crash

The US State Department said: “The United States expresses its official condolences for the deaths of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, Foreign Minister Amir-Abdollahian, and other members of their delegation in a helicopter crash in the northwest. of Iran.

“As Iran elects a new president, we reaffirm our support for the Iranian people and their fight for human rights and fundamental freedoms.”

Barney DavisMay 22, 2024 04:20

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Thousands of people mourn Iran’s President Raisi, while others celebrate his death.

Video broadcast by state media showed hordes of mourners gathering for a procession through the northwestern Iranian city of Tabriz, near the site where the politician’s helicopter crashed.

Raisi, 63, was one of eight passengers, including Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, aboard the helicopter as it flew through a mountainous region south of neighboring Azerbaijan in foggy conditions.

Despite the large crowds on Tuesday, most of whom appeared to be men, sections of the Iranian population have been celebrating Raisi’s death on social media. It is also unclear what international presence this week’s funeral will draw, as Raisi faced U.S. sanctions over his involvement in mass executions in 1988 and abuses against protesters and dissidents while leading the country’s judiciary. Iran, under Raisi, also sent bomb-carrying drones to Russia to be used in its war against Ukraine.

“I do not feel comfortable sending my condolences while Iran sends drones that are used against civilians in Ukraine,” Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis wrote on the X social platform.

Read the full story here:

Maroosha MuzaffarMay 22, 2024 04:05

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Iraq withholds payments for Iranian engineers killed by ISIS

The Secretary of Iran’s Engineering and Technical Services Exporters Association has claimed that the Iraqi government has been unable to settle more than $1 billion owed to Iranian contractors, Iran International reports.

Bahman Salehi Javid also revealed that the families of several Iranian engineers who were killed in 2015 during ISIS attacks have not received any of the $9 million per victim compensation legally stipulated by Iraqi law.

Barney DavisMay 22, 2024 03:20

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Putin praises Iran’s Raisi and asks parliament speaker to convey condolences

Russian President Vladimir Putin praised the late Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi as a reliable partner who always keeps his word and asked the speaker of parliament on Tuesday to convey his solidarity at commemorative events.

Raisi died in a helicopter crash near the border with Azerbaijan over the weekend along with his foreign minister and seven others.

“He was truly a reliable partner, a self-confident man, who acted in the national interest,” Putin told Vyacheslav Volodin, speaker of the State Duma’s lower house of parliament, as quoted by Russian news agencies.

“He was, of course, a man of his word and was always good to work with. “What I mean is that if we reached an agreement on something, you could be sure that the agreement would be carried out,” Putin said.

The Kremlin leader asked Volodin, who will attend the memorial events in Iran, to convey “our sincere condolences regarding this tragedy.”

Putin on Monday expressed his condolences to Iran’s interim president Mohammad Mokhber and all the Iranian people.

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, Russia has strengthened political, commercial and military ties with Iran in a deepening relationship that the United States and Israel view with concern.

Barney DavisMay 22, 2024 02:40

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Where did Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi’s helicopter crash?

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, a hardliner and potential successor to the country’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has died in a helicopter crash.

The helicopter took off from the Khodaafarin Dam in Iran’s East Azerbaijan province on Sunday afternoon.

But the helicopter later crashed in a remote, mountainous region of the Arasbaran forest, near the border with Azerbaijan, in the Varzeqan region. The helicopter was carrying Raisi and Amirabdollahian, as well as six other passengers and crew.

The approximate distance between the location where the helicopter is believed to have crashed and the Khodaafarin Dam is about 80 miles.

Barney DavisMay 22, 2024 00:25

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Houthis claim to have shot down US drone

Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen claimed Tuesday to have shot down a US drone over the impoverished Arab county. The U.S. military did not immediately acknowledge the claim.

If confirmed, this would be the second MQ-9 Reaper drone shot down by the Houthis over the past week as they press their campaign over the war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Last Friday, the Houthis claimed to have shot down a US drone over Marib province, hours after images of what appeared to be the remains of an MQ-9 Reaper circulated online. And early Saturday, a ship was also attacked in the Red Sea.

Barney DavisMay 22, 2024 00:20

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Search team says Iranian president’s helicopter ‘completely exploded’

A search and rescue team of motorcyclists from the operation to find Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has revealed that the wreckage of the helicopter was “completely exploded and everything burned”, according to Iran International.

Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s former foreign minister, controversially attributed the crash to US sanctions that restrict Iran’s access to essential aviation parts.

The helicopter, an American Bell from the 1970s, had been in service since the monarchy and was later confiscated by the government for official use.

Observers note that despite Iran’s strong ties with nations such as Russia and China, the regime has failed to modernize and adequately maintain its aviation fleet, raising questions about the true state of its national military and government transportation capabilities. .

Barney DavisMay 21, 2024 11:20 p.m.