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Iran more secure than USA: FM Spokeman

Tehran, May 16, IRNA -- Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said here Sunday that Iran is surely more secure than the United States even for American nationals.

Asefi made the remarks during his weekly press briefing in response to a report by the US government claiming Iran is insecure for American citizens.

Asefi said Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi is to head for Moscow on a two-day visit on Sunday to meet with senior Russian officials.

He added during the visit, the sides are to discuss avenues for bolstering bilateral cooperation as well as developments in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Caucasus and Central Asia.

The spokesman condemned attacks on the Iraqi holy cities of Najaf and Karbala by occupying forces in recent days, saying violating the sanctity of the holy Iraqi sites "is not acceptable at all".

US troops in the Iraqi holy city of Najaf killed at least 10 Iraqis in a six-hour gunbattle Friday.

The exchange of gunfire in Najaf damaged the golden dome of the holy shrine of Imam Ali (AS), the first Imam of the Infallible Household of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

He put the responsibility of such measures and moves on the US government.

Asefi stressed continuation of Iran`s transparent cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and expressed hope relations between the two sides would be normalized in the earliest time through continuation of cooperation and the IAEA`s non-political attitude towards Iran`s nuclear issue.

Meanwhile, he welcomed remarks by the Kuwaiti prime minister on the country`s interest in consolidation of friendly ties with Iran and said, Iran regards regional convergence as its most important foreign policy principles.

Asefi also congratulated the Indian Congress Party and nation over the victory of the political party in the recently-held elections and stressed that the existing very good relations between Tehran and New Delhi would continue in the future.

... Payvand News - 5/16/04 ... --

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