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Search efforts intensify as Raisi's helicopter crash site identified
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The crash occurred on Sunday amid adverse weather conditions, which are complicating ongoing search and rescue efforts.

Media reports indicate that one of three helicopters carrying President Raisi and his convoy encountered difficulties during their visit to the province. The President was returning from a dam inauguration ceremony on the Aras River with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev when the incident took place.

The helicopter, which included Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian among its passengers, crashed due to heavy fog and rain in the northern region of East Azerbaijan. The precise crash site is located in the Dizmar forest and mountainous district between the villages of Uzi and Pir Dawood.

Asghar Abbasgholizadeh, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) in Eastern Azerbaijan, reported that his forces detected signals from the helicopter and a crew member's mobile phone at the crash site. "We are deploying all military forces to the area and hope to bring good news to the people," he stated.

Earlier reports had suggested the helicopter made a hard landing due to poor weather conditions. The fate of the helicopter's occupants remains unconfirmed, but search and rescue teams are approaching the site.

In response to the incident, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson expressed readiness to assist Iran in locating the missing helicopter and investigating the cause of the crash.

Further updates are expected as rescue operations continue under challenging weather conditions. (ILKHA)

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