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Iraqi PM Hails Iran VP's Baghdad Visit

Service : Politic
TEHRAN, July 7 (ICANA) – Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has hailed Iranian vice president's Baghdad visit, saying it is a “major step” toward enhancing relations between the two neighboring countries.
Thursday, July 07, 2011 10:13:56 AM
Iraqi PM Hails Iran VP's Baghdad Visit

“The growing ties between Tehran and Baghdad indicate the great determination of the officials and nations of the two countries to enhance relations,” IRNA quoted Maliki as saying in a joint news conference with Mohammad Reza Rahimi in Baghdad on Tuesday.

“Fortunately the two countries have after years returned to their friendly ties,” Maliki said in reference to the severance of relations between the countries under executed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

In 1980, Iraq's Ba'athist regime, backed by the West, invaded Iran and imposed an eight-year war against the Islamic Republic.

“This visit paved the way for Tehran and Baghdad to expand their cooperation in the areas of energy, oil, electricity, gas, industry and agriculture among other fields,” the Iraqi premier pointed out.

“In such a constructive atmosphere, we call on Iranian companies and Iran's private sector to take action to invest in Iraq,” he urged, saying that the six memoranda of understanding signed during Rahimi's meetings with Iraqi officials would further pave the way for the efficient activity of Iranian investors in Iraq.

According to Maliki, the two countries also plan to hold regular meetings in the capitals to help development of bilateral relations.

The Iraqi premier also said his country is working to facilitate the pilgrimage of Iranian nationals to the shrine cities and holy sites in the country.

Construction of a new airport, offering better security and comfort services and faster issuance of visas are among the measures the Iraqi government has taken to ease Iranian pilgrims' stay in the country, Maliki added.

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