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Iran-Iraq joint oil fields dispute can be settled through dialogue: Iraqi ambassador

TEHRAN, Aug. 19 (Mehr News Agency) -- The Iraqi ambassador to Tehran says that negotiation is the best way to settle the dispute between Iran and Iraq over the oil fields in the border region that are under joint ownership.

"I believe dialogue is... the only way to resolve such problems" and Iran and Iraq have set up some committees to help increase bilateral cooperation and to determine how the two countries will develop the oilfields, Ambassador Mohammad Majid al-Sheikh told the Mehr News Agency on Tuesday.

He went on to say that an Iraqi technical committee recently traveled to Iran and held talks with Iranian Oil Ministry officials.

The Iraqi committee also signed a number of memorandums of understanding with their Iranian counterparts in which Iran agreed to provide technical expertise to the Iraqi oil sector, al-Sheikh stated.

He also said that Iran has significantly increased exports to Iraq.

The value of Iran's exports to Iraq stood at 3 billion dollars in 2008 but Iraq forecasts that it will rise to 4 billion dollars in 2009, the ambassador added.

Commenting on the Iraqi government's counter-terrorism measures, al-Sheikh said Baghdad will not allow any group to use its territory as a base to carry out terrorist operations against any country.

And the Iraqi government has started fighting the Party for a Free Life in Kurdistan (PJAK), the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), and the Mojahedin Khalq Organization (MKO), he stated.

All these groups started their activities during the rule of the Baath Party (1968-2003), but the current Iraqi government will not allow them to continue their activities, he added.

... Payvand News - 08/19/09 ... --

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