People attend a funeral ceremony for the late Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in Tabriz, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran, May 21, 2024.

Iranian Media Claims Government 'Misleading' Public on Raisi Crash Details

Thursday, 05/23/2024

Iranian daily Ham-Mihan has lambasted the government for providing "misleading and ambiguous information" regarding the helicopter crash that killed President Ebrahim Raisi and his entourage.

The editorial titled "Continuing Weaknesses" delves into a series of government oversights and the opaque handling of the crash details that have fueled public distrust.

Raisi and his companions died in a freak helicopter crash in East Azarbaijan province on Sunday, with the cause of the crash still undetermined.

Highlighting reports from Turkish journalists who arrived at the crash site ahead of official rescue teams and noting the presence of civilian motorcyclists at the scene before any official forces, the reformist Iranian newspaper underscored the chaotic and slow response to the incident.

The editorial questioned the feasibility of the overloaded helicopter choosing a hazardous mountainous route over a safer main road trajectory, suggesting “negligence” on the part of the flight planners.

The editorial concluded by lamenting the proliferation of rumors and the government's sluggish response, which has only served to deepen public suspicions and confusion.

Simultaneously, Jomhuri Eslami, a conservative outlet, speculated on the potential of a "foreign conspiracy" in the helicopter crash, specifically pointing to the proximity of the crash site to the Iran-Azerbaijan border and the alleged presence of Israeli military and intelligence infrastructure in Azerbaijan. The publication suggested that the unique circumstances of Raisi's helicopter being the only one of three to crash might indicate more than just an accident.

Jomhuri Eslami further explored scenarios including possible “sabotage or disruption of the helicopter’s radar and navigation systems,” intensifying the discourse around external involvement.

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