World leaders mourn Iranian President Raisi President Dr Ebrahim Raisi

Herald Reporter

WORLD leaders have extended condolences to the Iranian government and nation over the death of President Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash in his country’s north-west on Sunday.

President Raisi died with members of his accompanying party, who included Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, when their helicopter crashed in the Dizmar forest. 

Following hours of searching hampered by poor weather conditions, rescuers found the burnt-out wreckage of the helicopter and its passengers were confirmed dead.

Russian President Vladimir Putin hailed President Raisi as an outstanding politician and said his death was an “irreplaceable loss”.

“Raisi was an outstanding politician whose entire life was dedicated to serving his homeland,” Mr Putin said in a letter to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. “As a true friend of Russia, he made an invaluable personal contribution to the development of good-neighbourly relations between our countries, and made great efforts to take them to the level of a strategic partnership.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the Iranian President and his foreign minister had been “true and reliable friends” of Russia. He described the pair as patriots who firmly defended the interests of their state and gave their lives in selfless service to their motherland.

China’s President Xi Jinping paid tribute to President Raisi, saying the tragic death of his Iranian counterpart was a great loss to the Iranian people.

“President Xi Jinping pointed out that the Chinese people have lost a good friend,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Mr Wang Wenbin said at a press conference.

Mr Wang said China was also saddened by the death of Amir-Abdollahian. He said China would offer the necessary support and assistance and continue to support the Iranian government and people in safeguarding their independence, stability and development.

Indian Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi also said he was deeply saddened and shocked by the tragic demise of the Iranian president. “My heartfelt condolences to his family and the people of Iran. India stands with Iran in this time of sorrow,” he said in a social media post on Monday.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif declared a day of mourning as a mark of respect for President Raisi and his companions.

“Pakistan had the pleasure of hosting President Raisi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian on a historic visit, less than a month ago. They were good friends of Pakistan,” he wrote on X.

“I, along with the government and people of Pakistan, extend our deepest condolences and sympathies to the Iranian nation on this terrible loss. The great Iranian nation will overcome this tragedy with customary courage.”

Imprisoned former Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan said: 

“We are deeply grieved to hear of the tragic deaths of President Ebrahim Raisi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in a helicopter crash. They led their country’s resolute support for the beleaguered Palestinian people.” 

“Our condolences go to the people and leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran as we stand with them in their hour of grief and trial,” he tweeted. 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan described Mr Raisi as his counterpart and brother.

“I remember Mr Raisi with respect and gratitude” as a person who “worked for peace of Iranian people and for our region during his tenure,” he added.

 Venezuelan President Mr Nicolas Maduro said he was shocked by the tragic demise of President Raisi whom he described as an exemplary person and outstanding world leader.

 Prime Minister of neighbouring Iraq, Mr Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani also offered deepest condolences to Ayatollah Khamenei and the government and people of Iran.

“With great sorrow and profound sadness, we received the news of the tragic helicopter crash in northern Iran that claimed the lives of the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Ebrahim Raisi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, and their companions,” he said in a statement.

Iraq declared one day on national mourning over the Iranian president’s death.

President of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq Nechirvan Barzani said: “The passing of President Raisi is an immense tragedy and a profound loss for the Islamic Republic of Iran, its people, and its friends.”

“Nevertheless, we have faith that the noble people of Iran and the Islamic Republic will overcome this immense loss.”

The Palestinian Hamas resistance group expressed sorrow and pain at the tragedy while Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas also sent a condolence message.

Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement also described the Iranian president as a “big brother” to the Lebanese resistance movement, and a staunch supporter of its cause, saying he had defended resistance groups and their fighters.

Charles Michel, president of the European Council, said in a social media post: “The EU expresses its sincere condolences for the death of President Raisi and Foreign Minister Amir-Abdollahian, as well as other members of their delegation and crew in a helicopter accident. Our thoughts go to the families.”

UAE President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan said his country stood in solidarity with Iran at this difficult time.”

In another statement on X, Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani extended condolences to the government and people of Iran.

 Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman also offered condolences over the death of President Raisi and his companions.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah, Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim and Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev also consoled the people of Iran over the tragic accident.

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