Ayatollah Khamenei Declares 5-Day Mourning for President Raisi

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has declared five days of mourning following the death of the country’s President, Ebrahim Raisi.

President Raisi died in a helicopter crash in a mountainous region of north-western Iran, alongside Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.

State media confirmed the fatal crash occurred on Sunday.

Ayatollah Khamenei expressed his condolences “to the dear people of Iran.”

At 63, Raisi had been considered a potential successor to the supreme leader.

Vice-President Mohammad Mokhber has been appointed to assume interim duties following the death of President Ebrahim Raisi.

Mr. Mokhber will collaborate with the heads of Iran’s legislature and judiciary to organize a presidential election within 50 days, as stipulated by Iran’s constitution for replacing a president who dies in office.

Additionally, the cabinet has named Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri Kani as the acting foreign minister.

Initial reports indicated that the helicopter carrying President Ebrahim Raisi and his entourage made a hard landing in foggy conditions.

The crash occurred near the border with Azerbaijan, where Mr. Raisi had been meeting with President Ilham Aliyev. Local media reported that he was in the region to inaugurate the Qiz Qalasi and Khodaafarin dams.

On Monday, the Iranian Red Crescent confirmed that the bodies of the president and others who perished in the crash had been recovered, and search operations had concluded.

“We are in the process of transferring the bodies of the martyrs to Tabriz [in Iran’s north-west],” the organization’s chief said on state TV.

Tasnim, an Iranian news outlet affiliated with the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, reported that President Ebrahim Raisi’s funeral will be held on Tuesday in Tabriz.

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