Vice president: Iran-Iraq relations play essential role in boosting regional security
Iran’s first vice president says relations between Iran and Iraq play an essential role in boosting security in the region and should be expanded at all levels.
According to the reports, Mohammad Mokhber made the remarks in a Sunday meeting with the visiting Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in Tehran, during which the two sides discussed matters of mutual interest and ways of expanding bilateral relations.
Referring to age-old cultural, political and economic exchanges between Iran and Iraq, Mokhber said, “Relations between the two countries play an essential role in promoting stability and security in the region and bilateral cooperation must expand at all levels.”
During the meeting, Iran’s first vice president also thanked the Iraqi government for hosting a conference in Baghdad to ease regional tensions and discover the potential for regional cooperation.
“Iran regards the interference of foreign countries in the region as harmful to regional states and underscores the need for endeavors to boost bilateral and multilateral cooperation,” he remarked.
Mokhber emphasized, "The presence of Americans in the region not only failed to benefit regional countries, but also caused great harm to the region’s people."
Elsewhere in his remarks, Mokhber pointed to the great capabilities of Iran’s public and private sectors, particularly in the engineering sector, and voiced the Islamic Republic’s readiness to participate in Iraq’s reconstruction process.
“Political relations between the two countries will definitely become more stable and more powerful with the expansion of economic relations,” he added.
Relations should not be affected by any factor: Iraqi PM
For his part, the Iraqi premier stressed that the Tehran-Baghdad relations should not be affected by any factor, saying that Iraq strives to fulfill all of its commitments with regard to Iran.
According to Kadhimi, Iraq opposes the inhumane sanctions against Iran and believes that the imposition of sanctions is not a viable solution to any problem.
The experience of sanctions against Iraq in the 1990s demonstrated that sanctions cause many problems for ordinary people, he said.
The Iraqi prime minister also thanked the Iranian government and people for standing by the side of Iraq in the fight against Daesh and other terrorist groups.
Kadhimi noted that Iraq has allocated a quota of 60,000 pilgrims for Iranians willing to head to the holy Iraqi city of Karbala to commemorate Arba’een, the 40th day after the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (AS).
“However, given the enthusiasm of the Iranian people to attend the Arba’een ceremony, we will increase Iranians' quota and will consider suitable facilities for them to enter” Iraq, the Iraqi prime minister said.
Kadhimi added that most American forces will exit Iraq by the end of the year.