Zarif calls for enhanced Tehran-Baghdad ties
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has expressed hope for further expansion of relations between the Islamic Republic and Iraq, PressTV reported.
"We hope that Tehran-Baghdad relations will be promoted under Iraq's new government," Zarif said in a meeting with Iraq's Prime Minister-designate Haider al-Abadi in the Iraqi capital on Sunday.
He said Iran attaches "strategic significance" to relations with its western neighbor.
In a separate meeting with Iraq's Parliament Speaker Salim al-Jabouri, the Iranian top diplomat emphasized that Iran sees the Arab country's security as important as its own, adding, "We stand behind all the Iraqi people and support all political groups in this country."
Zarif also met with Iraq's outgoing Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and appreciated as "outstanding" his role in maintaining stability and combating terrorism in Iraq during recent months.
Terrorism is considered as a threat to all regional nations, the Iranian minister said, adding, "Fighting this ominous phenomenon...requires the cooperation of all countries and also helping the Iraqi government to solve this problem."
Iraq is facing tensions created by the ISIL Takfiri terrorists that have overrun large swaths of land in the country. They have been committing heinous crimes in the areas they have taken, including the mass execution of civilians as well as Iraqi army troops and officers.