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Iran President wraps up Sri Lanka visit

Colombo, April 29, IRNA -- President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran wound up his visit to Sri Lanka on Tuesday heading for New Delhi, India at the third and last leg of this three-nation regional tour.

The Iranian president was officially seen off by his Lankan counterpart Mahinda Rajapaksa and a number of senior officials of the country.

While in Colombo, the Iranian president held separate meetings with President Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka .

The two sides also signed five Memoranda of Understanding on mutual cooperation.

The Iranian president also met with a group of Sri Lankan Shia Muslims as well as the followers of other religions.

He further attended a ceremony to inaugurate a joint project for renovation of Sri Lanka's sole oil refinery, the Sapugaskande, outside the Lankan capital.

Based on an agreement signed by Iranian and Sri Lankan officials on Monday for the refinery's reconstruction, Tehran has undertaken to provide Colombo with necessary technical and engineering services as well as skillful manpower.

The Islamic Republic of Iran will spend dlrs 700 million for equipping the oil refinery and triple its production capacity from the present 50,000 barrels per day to 150,000 barrels per day.

The president is accompanied by Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki, Minister for Commerce Massoud Mir Kazemi, Chairman of Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO) Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei and senior adviser to the president Mojtaba Samareh Hashemi.

... Payvand News - 04/29/08 ... --

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