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Senior Iraqi delegation heads for Tehran

Baghdad, Sept 5, IRNA-A high-ranking Iraqi delegation headed by Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Berham Salih left Baghdad for Tehran Tuesday.

An official Iraqi source told IRNA here that Iraqi Senior Advisor for Political Affairs Movafagh Ar-Rabiee, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Rafi al-Issawi and Minister of Trade Abd al-Falah al-Sudani are accompanying Salih.

The source said the Iraqi delegation is scheduled to hold talks with senior Iranian officials on economic, political and security issues.

He further said talks between the two sides would focus mainly on trade matters, particularly the supply of electricity and oil products to Iraq which has a shortage of these products.

The two countries fought a bloody war from 1980-88 but relations have warmed since the fall of Saddam Hussein and the Shiites gaining an upper hand in the newly established government of the country.

The visit is aimed at enhancing and consolidating relations between the two countries, the source further stated.

Iraqi PM's scheduled visit to Iran cancelled: spokesman

Baghdad, Sept 5, IRNA-Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabagh said here Tuesday that a scheduled visit by Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki to Iran has been cancelled.

Iraqi newspapers on Tuesday quoted al-Dabagh as saying Al-Maliki's agenda for the next week does not include a visit to Iran.

The spokesman, who praised Iran as a "friend and neighbor" of Iraq, said there was a need to bolster relations between the two countries.

Iraqi Minister of Education Khudayr al-Khuzai had announced on Sunday that Prime Minister Al-Maliki would pay an official visit to Iran next week to discuss avenues for bolstering bilateral relations.

He, moreover, quoted the prime minister as saying that simultaneous with his visit he would release all Iranian nationals who are currently in detention in Iraq for illegal entry.

Informed sources said the Iraqi prime minister still had plans to visit Tehran in the near future.

... Payvand News - 9/5/06 ... --

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