Iraq president to attend Nowruz celebration in Iran
Following the nomination of March 21st as the International Day of Nowruz, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has been officially invited to Iran to attend New Year's celebrations, Press TV reported.
In a letter to his Iraqi counterpart, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has extended a formal invitation to participate in ceremonies held in the ancient Iranian city of Shiraz marking the Persian New Year, Nowruz and the beginning of spring.
The letter was submitted to Talabani by Iranian Ambassador to Baghdad Hassan Kazemi Qomi, Mehr News Agency said on Wednesday.
President Ahmadinejad is expected to deliver a speech at the Nowruz ceremonies in the presence of his counterparts from two Persian-language countries Tajikistan and Afghanistan Imomali Rakhmon and Hamid Karzai.
Talabani and Kazemi Qomi exchanged views on bilateral relations and the latest political developments in Iraq after the country's recent parliamentary elections.
The Iranian diplomat expressed Tehran's support for political and democratic trend in Iraq.
Meaning 'new day,' Nowruz is celebrated by over 300 million people worldwide. Beginning on March 21st, the day of the vernal equinox, observance of the holiday continues for nearly two weeks.
The ancient tradition of Nowruz and the rebirth of nature is observed in the Balkans, the Black Sea Basin, the Caucasus, Central Asia and the Middle East.
Nowruz was also registered on the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on September 30, 2009.