Claim: A video on social media shows the late Iranian President, Ebrahim Raisi’s chopper was shot down.

Fact: The claim is false as the original video is from 2016, and shows a Turkish military helicopter shot down by Kurdish militants.

On 21 May 2024, a Facebook user posted a video with the caption,

ایران کے پہاڑی علاقوں سے یہ ایک ویڈیو وائرل ہو رہی ہے جس میں دیکھا جاسکتا ہے کہ ایرانی صدر کے ہیلی کاپٹر کو نشانہ بنایا گیا ہے.”

[Translation: A video from the mountainous regions of Iran is going viral in which it can be seen that the helicopter of the Iranian President has been targeted.]

Ebrahim Raisi Death

The video was shared only days after Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, along with six other top officials, and flight crew were killed in a helicopter crash near the country’s Azerbaijan border on Sunday, 19 May 2024.

The wreckage was found early on Monday 20 May, after an overnight search in poor weather conditions.

Fact or Fiction?

When Soch Fact Check conducted a reverse image search of the video’s keyframes, the results on Google led us to an article by the Arabic news outlet Sky News Arabia published on 16 June 2016. When translated into English, the headline reads, “Video: The moment a Turkish warplane was hit and exploded”.

The article features a longer version of the viral video in which a man in plain clothes can be seen using a shoulder missile to shoot down a helicopter flying over a mountainous area. The footage was released by the Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK) and shows the moment they targeted the Turkish Army Super Cobra helicopter in a mountain, according to the report. Describing the attack, the article adds that the missile exploded in the air and made several spiral turns after hitting it. This can also be observed in the viral video in question.

Corroborating this, we found that the same video was shared in an article from 2016 by the Daily Mail UK, with the headline,  “Dramatic moment Kurdish fighters down a helicopter with missile”.

To investigate the claim further, Soch Fact Check also conducted a keyword search with “Ebrahim Raisi death or murder”. However, we found that Iran’s military has not found any evidence of criminal activity in the president’s helicopter crash in their preliminary reports, according to recent news by Reuters and Al-Jazeera. However, Soch Fact Check finds that this is a developing story as the Iranian army’s investigation of the fatal crash is still underway.

It is noteworthy, however, that the video in question has not been shared with a false claim for the first time. Soch Fact Check recently debunked a claim that the same video shows Afghan forces shooting the Pakistan Army’s helicopter.


On Facebook, the viral video was shared by multiple accounts. One post in particular, by a page Shahid Safi Official, received significant traction with 4.5 million views, 72,000 likes, and 2,400 comments. It was also shared here, here and here.

On Youtube, the video was shared with the false claim here, here and here.

Conclusion: The video of a helicopter being shot down is not linked to the crash of the Iranian president’s helicopter. The original video is from 2016, showing an attack on a Turkish army helicopter by Kurdish militants.


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