Ahmadinejad welcomes end of US combat mission in Iraq
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday welcomed Washington's decision to end its official combat operations in neighbouring Iraq, reported dpa.
"We ... regard it as a positive move to decrease [foreign] interference in Iraqi internal affairs," Ahmadinejad said in an interview with the Arabic news channel Al-Alam published on the network's website.
"But the pullout is only useful if the independence of the Iraqi nation and government is respected [by the United States] as well," Ahmadinejad said.
Iran itself has been accused of meddling in Iraqi affairs both within and outside Iraq. The US has also accused Iran of being involved in attacks in Iraq. Iran has denied both charges.
US President Barack Obama on Tuesday declared an end to the US combat mission in Iraq more than seven years after the US-led invasion of the country.
On Wednesday, the US changed its command in Iraq to mark the end of official combat operations and a switch to what is being billed as a more civilian effort.
"Obama personally should commit himself not to interfere in Iraqi affairs anymore and further punish the intruders," Ahmadinejad said.
"Those responsible for the invasion should be brought before an international court and punished," he demanded, referring to Obama's predecessor George W Bush, who ordered it.