Home iran Iran Armed Forces Appears To Reject Foul Play in Raisi Helicopter Crash

Iran Armed Forces Appears To Reject Foul Play in Raisi Helicopter Crash


The General Staff of Iran’s Armed Forces released a preliminary report on the investigation into the President’s helicopter crash, stating that it collided with the mountain terrain and caught fire.

The statement, published on Thursday, claimed that the helicopter was on its designated flight path at the time of the accident and that “no bullet marks or similar damage” were found on the aircraft parts found at the crash site.

The helicopter carrying President Raisi and seven others, including Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, crashed in heavy fog while crossing mountainous terrain near the border with Azerbaijan last Sunday, resulting in the deaths of all on board.

The report mentioned that the flight’s pilot communicated with the two accompanying helicopters “about a minute and a half before the crash” but did not specify the nature of the call. No suspicious activity was allegedly detected in the communications between the control tower and the flight group.

Notably, the report also mentioned that the Iranian public should not pay attention to what he referred to as “unverified and speculative comments”, especially those spread by “foreign media on social media.”

Broadcasting from Iran is controlled by the Islamic Republic and reflects its official ideology. While opinions step out of those bonds online sometimes, the authorities often target and jail those who step out of line with the regime’s narratives, making Iran one of the world’s most repressive countries for journalists.

In the immediate aftermath of the crash, state media presented numerous conflicting reports of what happened. That, combined with the apparent disregard for protocols, namely allowing a permit to be issued during a weather amber warning, and Raisi’s profile role as the next potential next Supreme Leader, has raised doubts and mystery around whether this was an accident.

The authorities face intensive scrutiny, including from domestic politicians, and the media inside Iran, who demand clear explanations and transparency regarding the cause of the crash.