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Chalabi denies Iran's meddling in Iraq's internal affairs

Kuwait City, Dec 26, IRNA-Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister and Head of National Congress Ahmad Chalabi in an interview with the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Ra'i al-'Aam said on Monday that the rumors about Iran's interference in the internal affairs of his country are baseless.

Expressing surprise over such charges, he added that such unfounded accusations brought up by some Arab officials mean that Iraqi Shiites give preference to their religious faith rather than remaining loyal to their national concerns, which is unrealistic.

"At present Iraq is subject to terrorist attacks and we expect our neighbors to help the Iraqi people.

"Iraqi Shiites being dependent upon famous Arab tribes and ethnics take pride in their Arabic identity. However, they are reluctant to offend Iran," he added.

In response to the fact that Iran itself admits having some influence on Iraq, he said that every country somehow influences its neighboring states.

"For example, just as Iraq influences Turkey through its oil pipeline to that country, Turkey leaves an impact on Iraq through the water flowing into our country," he noted.

Chalabi said that various states use their influence on other countries, adding that this should, however, be free from any threat and should be based upon respect for the sovereignty of both sides.

... Payvand News - 12/26/05 ... --

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