Iran requested assistance from Washington after crash

Iran requested assistance from Washington after crash
Iran requested assistance from Washington after crash

After the helicopter accident that occurred on Sunday, May 19 in eastern Azerbaijan, in the northwest of Iran, which led to the death of Iranian head of state Ebrahim Raïssi, the United States confirmed on Monday, May 20, that Iran had indeed asked them for their assistance. “The Iranian government asked us for help”said State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller. “We said we would be willing to help, which we would do for any government in this situation”he added.

Read also: Death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raïssi: reactions, elections… The point in four questions

Help was ultimately not provided

Matthew Miller did not provide details on the content of this request for assistance by the Iranian authorities. He also did not specify by what means it was transmitted, even though the United States and Iran have not maintained diplomatic relations since the 1979 revolution.

The spokesperson, however, confirmed that this assistance was intended to help with the search after the disappearance of the helicopter on Sunday May 19 afternoon, while it was flying over a steep and wooded region of Iran, in difficult weather conditions, with rain and thick fog. The United States ultimately did not provide the requested aid, “for essentially logistical reasons”according to the State Department, the equivalent of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Read also: Death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raïssi: a presidential election scheduled for June 28

The helicopter, which was transporting the Iranian president as well as his Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, was finally located Monday May 20 morning, after several hours of searching, according to theAFP. The device was found completely burned. All passengers on the flight died and the president’s remains were transferred to the city of Tabriz, capital of East Azerbaijan province, for his funeral.

“We continue to monitor the situation, but we have no idea of ​​the cause of the accident”US Defense Minister Lloyd Austin previously said at a press conference. “Ultimately, it is the Iranian government that is responsible for the decision to fly a 45-year-old helicopter into what has been described as poor weather conditions, and no one else”he added.

More than 40 years of tensions between Tehran and Washington

Although the United States has presented its official condolences to Iran, relations have been tense between the two countries since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, and the arrival at the head of Iran of Ayatollah Khomeini. As explained Releasethe hostile declarations and phases of extreme tension between the two States have never really stopped.

Ayatollah Khomeini, leader of the Islamic revolution, on the balcony of the Alavi Institute in Tehran, February 1979. | REUTERS ARCHIVES
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Ayatollah Khomeini, leader of the Islamic revolution, on the balcony of the Alavi Institute in Tehran, February 1979. | REUTERS ARCHIVES

As early as 1979, during the Iranian revolution, American flags were burned in the streets. On November 4, the hostage crisis began. Around fifty American diplomats are taken hostage by students at the American embassy in Tehran. They present themselves as “Islamic students following the path of the imam” Khomeini, according to TV5Monde , which returns to the event. The hostages were not released until 1981. It was this event which marked the breakdown of diplomatic relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the United States, and the beginning of mutual mistrust.

Read also: In Iran, the death of President Ebrahim Raïssi “changes nothing”

In the 2000s, the United States, through its President George W. Bush, fought what the latter called “Axis of Evil”, including Iran within it. As stated The echoes , the targeted countries are accused of supporting terrorism and directly threatening the United States. The remarks provoke the ire of the Islamic Republic.

The same year, 2002, Iran’s nuclear ambitions were revealed, which worried the United States and Israel. Several years of negotiations will then lead to the Vienna agreement on Iranian nuclear power, in July 2015, to lift part of the economic sanctions against the country, in exchange for its promise never to develop atomic weapons. But upon his arrival at the White House, American President Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of the United States from this agreement on May 8, 2018.




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