Thousands attend President Raisi's funeral in Tehran: state TV

Thousands attend President Raisi's funeral in Tehran: state TV

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Thousands of Iranians poured into the streets of Tehran on Wednesday to join the funeral procession of President Ebrahim Raisi and his entourage, who died in a helicopter crash on Sunday.

In the city center, people holding Raisi's portrait gathered in and around Tehran University, where Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is due to lead prayers for Raisi and his comrades, including Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.

Raisi's helicopter crashed into a fog-shrouded mountainside in northern Iran on Sunday as the group was heading to the city of Tabriz to attend the inauguration of a dam project on the border with Azerbaijan.

A massive search and rescue operation was launched, which included help from Turkey, Russia and the European Union. State television announced Raisi's death early Monday.

Raisi, who was widely expected to succeed Khamenei as supreme leader, was 63.

Large banners have been put up across the capital, describing the late president as a “martyr of service”, while others have said “farewell to the servant of the dispossessed”.

Tehran residents received phone messages urging them to “attend the funeral of a martyr of service.”

According to state media, the procession, which will include foreign dignitaries, is planned to start from the university and lead to the vast Enghelab Square in the center of the city.

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