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6/22/05

Iranian FM: Developments augur well for Iraq

Brussels, June 22, IRNA-Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi said Wednesday that recent developments in Iraq "augur well for the future of Iraq and herald gradual progress toward the rule of law and establishment of civil government."

Addressing an international conference on Iraq in Brussels, Kharrazi stressed that Iran believes the future of Iraq belongs to all Iraqis and the majority should respect the rights of the minority on the basis of democracy, fairness and national solidarity.

"The people of Iraq, like all other sovereign nations, have the right to self-determination and self-government without the presence of foreign forces," he stressed.

"Provoking groups and communities against each other and sowing seeds of communal dissension are not only detrimental to Iraq's future, but also jeopardize the stability and security of the neigbouring countries and the entire region."

"Participation of all communities of Iraq in the political structure of the nation, especially in the process of framing the constitution, is essential for creation of a united and stable nation."

"In our view security in Iraq is the most important priority and the foundation for constructive developments," he said.

Foreign Ministers and officials from 80 countries and international organisations are taking part in the one-day meeting which is co-hosted by the EU and the US.

The Islamic Republic of Iran strongly condemns killings of innocent civilians, acts of disrespect to mosques and religious places, bombings and attacks against Iraq's infrastructure which are carried out with the outright aim of sabotaging the political process in this country, Kharrazi said.

Turning to economic cooperation with Iraq, Kharrazi said Iran's project for promotion of tourism and visits to holy shrines for about 100,000 visitors a month to Iraq will generate $500 million annually.

Plans are also being worked out for a swap operations of Iraqi oil up to 400,000 barrels per day.

Credit facilities up to $1 billion have been allocated by Iran's credit banks for exports of goods and investments.

Iran is preparing to participate in oil and gas projects in Iraq and to invest in the banking and financial sector either bilaterally or through other countries.

... Payvand News - 6/22/05 ... --



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