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President Rouhani voices condolences over Paralympic cyclist’s demise

Late Iranian Paralympic cyclist Bahman Golbarnezhad

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has extended his sincere condolences on the demise of Iranian Paralympic cyclist Bahman Golbarnezhad following a crash during the men’s C4/C5 road race at the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

“The bitter death of our beloved cyclist Bahman Golbarnezhad during Rio Paralympic Games brought sorrow to all of us. May his soul rest in peace,” Rouhani wrote in a message published on his twitter account.

“Bahman Golbarnezhad, the honorable war veteran of our country and member of Iran national cycling team in Rio Paralympic Games, fielded the circuit with great love and interest to exalt the name of Iran. He finally dedicated his life to such a goal. The Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs offers its condolences to the Iranian sports figures, Mina Paralympics delegation as well as the Iranian people over his demise,” the Iranian Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs said in a statement.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi also expressed his deep grief over Golbarnezhad’s death, commiserating with his family and the Iranian sports officials over the tragic incident.

He added that the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Embassy in Brazil has been asked to transfer the body of the late Paralympic athlete to Iran.

Additionally, Iran Majlis (parliament) Speaker Ali Larijani sent his deep condolences over the incident, noting that Golbarnezhad’s name will be always remembered as he did his utmost to bring pride to his country.

Golbarnezhad died following a crash that happened at around 10:40 a.m. local time (0740 GMT) on Saturday, while he was going down a steep hill on the first section of the mountainous Grumari loop.

The 48-year-old Iranian champion received treatment at the scene, and suffered a cardiac arrest as he was being transferred to hospital. He was pronounced dead shortly after arrival at Unimed Rio Hospital in Barra.

Iranian athletes have so far clinched 23 medals, seven golds, nine silvers and seven bronzes, and the Islamic Republic is in the 16th slot of the medal count table.

China is on top of the medal count table with 237 medals (105 golds, 81 silvers and 51 bronzes).

Britain has claimed the second spot with 147 medals (64 golds, 39 silvers, 44 bronzes). Ukraine is on the third with a total of 117 medals (41 golds, 37 silvers and 39 bronzes.)

The United States, Australia, Brazil, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy and Poland are in the 4th to 10th places respectively.

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