Iran’s President Raisi to be buried in Mashhad

Published: May 23, 2024
Mourners attend the funeral procession of Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi, in Tehran on May 22 Photo: AFP

Iran’s late President Ebrahim Raisi is set to be buried in the holy city of Mashhad on Thursday evening, four days after he was killed in a helicopter crash along with foreign minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and six other people.

Raisi’s coffin was flown to Mashhad in northeast Iran after a funeral procession was held for him on Thursday morning in the eastern city of Birjand, where thousands paid their respects as his remains were driven through the streets in a motorcade.

A guard of honour stood to attention as the plane carrying Raisi’s coffin arrived in Mashhad, his hometown, where he will be laid to rest at the gold-domed Imam Reza shrine.

Raisi, 63, was widely seen as a candidate to succeed 85-year-old Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, who wields ultimate power in Iran. Mohammad Mokhber, who had been first vice president, is serving as interim president until a June election.

Eight passengers and crew were killed when the helicopter crashed in mountainous terrain near the Azerbaijan border.

A ceremony was held to commemorate Amirabdollahian at the foreign ministry in Tehran, where acting Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri Kani described him as a martyr who had “guaranteed the revolutionary nature of the foreign ministry”.

Amirabdollahian will be buried south of Tehran in the Shah Abdolazim shrine, a mausoleum where notable Iranian politicians and artists are buried.

The presidential election has been scheduled for June 28.

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