Iran's Ahmadinejad to be protected by Iraqis during Baghdad visit

Iran Materials 21 February 2008 17:59 (UTC +04:00)

(dpa) - Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will be under the protection of the Iraqi government during his upcoming visit to Baghdad, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said Thursday.

Denying a possible role of US troops in the visit, Zebari told the Saudi-owned al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper the president would be hosted and protected solely by the Iraqi government.

"President Ahmadinejad will not meet any US official in Baghdad but his meetings will be with Iraqi officials only," Zebari said.

Ahmadinejad is due to visit Iraq on March 2.

Iran has delayed a fresh round of talks with US officials over Iraq, which were originally scheduled to take place in Baghdad at end of last month.