Iran’s first vice president, Mohammad Mokhber, is expected to assume the presidency after Ebrahim Raisi’s death in a helicopter crash as the country gears up for early elections.

The Iranian constitution stipulates that the first vice president take over “in the event of the president’s death, dismissal, resignation, absence or illness for more than two months”.

Raisi, who died on Sunday along with Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and other officials, was nearing the end of his first four-year term as president.

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Mokhber’s interim appointment requires the approval of Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final word in all state affairs.

Presidential elections to pick a permanent successor are to be held within 50 days, according to the constitution.

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