Iranian leader Ebrahim Raisi’s death: Israeli official speaks out as conspiracy theories circulate

Late Iran President Ebrahim Raisi & late Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.

Israel on Monday (May 20) denied any involvement in the death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi. Speaking to the news agency Reuters, an Israeli official, who chose to remain anonymous, said, “It wasn’t us.”

Raisi, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-abdollahian, and other Iranian officials were killed in a helicopter crash in mountainous terrain near the Azerbaijan border. Raisi, a hardliner seen as a potential successor to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was 63 years old at the time of his death.

No official response from Israel yet

The Israeli government has officially not commented on Raisi’s death yet. This comment by the Israeli official to Reuters comes as both countries are in a proxy war.

In April, Iran launched hundreds of drones and ballistic missiles at Israel in response to an Israeli airstrike on an Iranian consulate in Syria that killed Iranian generals and five officers. The two countries have waged a shadow war of covert operations and cyberattacks for years, but the exchange of fire in April was their first direct military confrontation, the news agency Associated Press reported.

For a long time, Israel has viewed Iran as its greatest threat because of Tehran’s controversial nuclear program, its ballistic missiles and its support for armed groups including the Palestinian militant group Hamas.

Conspiracy circulates online over Raisi’s death

Following the announcement of the deaths of Raisi, Amir-abdollahian, and other passengers and crew onboard the helicopter, a conspiracy theory started circulating online that Israeli intelligence agency Mossad was behind the crash.

In a post on X, media personality Ari Hoffman clarified that this was fake news.

“Hamas Telegram has picked up a joke that Raisi’s pilot was a Mossad agent called Eli Copter and is pushing it as fact. These are the same geniuses that the mainstream media has been getting casualty numbers from for 7 months and publishing them without verification,” Hoffman said.

“My French is pretty terrible but it sounds like this French anchor picked up the false report from Hamas that a Mossad agent named “Eli Copter” was likely involved in the helicopter crash which killed Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi The media is so eager to blame Israel for everything they continue to push fake news,” he added.

Hillel Fuld, a columnist, also confirmed on X that this is rumour.

“You LITERALLY cannot make this stuff up. Tons of people made the joke that the helicopter pilot was a Mossad agent called Eli Copter. Tons of Israel-haters including actual TV stations are reporting it like it’s a fact,” Fuld said. Wion and Agencies.

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