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Raisi's death won’t affect development of relations between Russia and Iran — expert

According to Boris Dolgov, relations between Iran and Russia are developing steadily in terms of cooperation

MOSCOW, May 20. /TASS/. Iran's policy towards Russia will not change in connection with the death of President of the Islamic Republic, Ebrahim Raisi, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hossein Hossein Amirabdollahian, in a helicopter crash, Boris Dolgov, leading researcher at the Center for Arab and Islamic Studies, told TASS.

"In my opinion, this tragic death will not lead to any changes and will not affect the situation in relations between Iran and Russia, since these relations are developing steadily in terms of cooperation," he said.

The expert noted that in the context of the development of the situation in the country and in the region, two options must be considered.

"First, if this tragic event is the result of a helicopter malfunction, some technical reason, <...> then new leaders will be elected and the same policies will be pursued that were pursued before, which, in fact, are being pursued by the leaders of Iran," the expert said.

"But if this tragic death is a consequence of a terrorist act - it’s difficult to talk about this now and we cannot say this until there are no results of the investigation - then, of course, both domestic policy and foreign policy will change, and appropriate measures will be taken," he said.

"That is, this will lead to a radicalization of the situation in the region, but it’s too early to talk about this, we need to wait for the results of the investigation, then, in fact, the situation will become clearer."

On May 19, a helicopter carrying the Iranian president crashed in Iran's East Azerbaijan Province. Among those on board were Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, Governor of East Azerbaijan Province Malek Rahmati, and Mohammad Ali Ale-Hashem, imam of Friday Prayer in Tabriz. Iranian Vice President Mohsen Mansouri confirmed the death of President Raisi and his entourage.