Helicopter carrying Iran's president Ebrahim Raisi suffers a ‘hard landing’ | World News - Hindustan Times

Helicopter carrying Iran's president Ebrahim Raisi suffers a ‘hard landing’

May 19, 2024 07:27 PM IST

A helicopter carrying Iran president Ebrahim Raisi suffered a “hard landing”, but no injuries have been reported yet.

A helicopter carrying Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi suffered a “hard landing” on Sunday, Iranian state media reported, without immediately elaborating.

Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi (AFP/File)
Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi (AFP/File)

State TV did not give any further details about the incident.

The reports came when Raisi was travelling in Iran's East Azerbaijan province. State TV described the area of the incident happening as being near Jolfa, a city on the border with with the nation of Azerbaijan, some 600 kilometres (375 miles) northwest of the Iranian capital, Tehran.

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian was also traveling with Raisi in the helicopter. One local government official used the word “crash” to describe the incident, but the official is yet to reach the scene of the incident yet.

Read more: 20 killed in Israeli airstrike in central Gaza

It is not yet known if Raisi or any other passengers in the helicopter were hurt in the incident. Rescuers were attempting to reach the destination but were hampered because of poor weather conditions, state TV reported.

Heavy rains and fog were reported in the area with some wind, which might have led to the “hard landing”.

Raisi had been in Azerbaijan early Sunday to inaugurate a dam with Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev. The dam is the third one that the two nations built on the Aras River. The visit came despite chilly relations between the two nations, including over a gun attack on Azerbaijan's Embassy in Tehran in 2023, and Azerbaijan's diplomatic relations with Israel, which Iran's Shiite theocracy views as its main enemy in the region.

This comes amid rising tensions in Middle East, after both Iran and Israel launched missiles into each other's territory.

Iran flies a variety of helicopters in the country, but international sanctions make it difficult to obtain parts for them. Its military air fleet also largely dates back to before the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

(With inputs from AP)

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