Nov 17, 2018 17:25 Asia/Tehran [Updated: Apr 15, 2019 09:10 Asia/Tehran]

The Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, received Barham Salih Iraqi President and his accompanying delegation on Saturday afternoon.

Iran Press/Iran news: At this meeting, the Leader of the Islamic RevolutionAyatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei expressed pleasure over the successful organization of Parliament elections in Iraq and the election of the President, Prime Minister and other officials into office which led to the establishment of stability in the country, and stressed: "the way to overcome the problems and confront the conspiracies of the vindictive [enemies] is to safeguard national unity in Iraq, correctly identify enemies and friends, resistance in the face of the blatant enemy, reliance on the youth's capabilities as well as consolidating relations with religious scholars [marja's]."

At the beginning of the meeting, Ayatollah Khamenei congratulated Barham Salih for having been elected into the great responsibility of Presidency in the important country of Iraq and praised the deeply rooted and historical relations between the Iraqi and Iranian nation, adding that: "the bond between the two nation is matchless and the great Walk of Arbaeen is one example of it."

The Leader of the Islamic Revolution pointed out to the participation of over 2 million Iranian pilgrims in the Arbaeen walk this year and held: "upon their return, the hearts of all Iranian pilgrims were filled with gratitude for the Iraqi nation's hospitality and this indicates the utmost generosity of Iraqis in welcoming Iranian pilgrims. This hospitality and bond which was combined with love and kindness between the two nations cannot be expressed except through the language of arts."

Ayatollah Khamenei sincerely thanked the Iraqi President, Prime Minister as well as other representatives and the Iraqi nation for their peerless hospitality and asserted: "now that after eras of the rule of arrogance, the Iraqi nation owns the country and enjoys independence, the right to vote and self-determination, some spiteful governments seek to deprive the Iraqi people of enjoying this great victory and achievement and deny Iraq and this region peace.

The Leader went on to say that, “the only solution in confronting such conspiracies is safeguarding and strengthening the unity among Iraqi groups including Arabs, Kurds, Shias and Sunnis."

Ayatollah Khamenei received Iraqi president

The leader of the Islamic Revolution evaluated correct identification of enemies and friends to be extremely important and held: "some states within or outside our region are very hostile against Islam, Shia, Sunni and Iraq, and they interfere in the internal affairs of Iraq. These enemies should be resisted powerfully, and with regard to resisting against the blatant and impudent enemy, no compromise should be made."

Regarding mutual cooperation between Iran and Iraq, Ayatollah Khamenei reiterated: "the officials of the Islamic Republic of Iran are determined and look forward to expanding relations with Iraq. I also strongly believe in it."

Referring to the numerous capacities of the two countries for expanding cooperation, the leader of the Islamic Revolution said: "a dignified, powerful, independent and advanced Iraq is very beneficial for Iran, and we support our Iraqi brothers.

Ayatollah Khamenei regarded maintaining and strengthening relations with religious scholars [marja’iyah] as very important and stated: "marinating relations with the clergy, in different stages and levels, will be guiding."

The leader of the Islamic Revolution regarded reliance on the youth as a factor that can bring about major changes and went on to say: "a clear example of amazing outcomes of relying on the youth was the formation of Hashd Al-Shabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) amidst the fight against Takfiri terrorism-- and this must be endorsed."

During this meeting, in which Iran's president Hassan Rouhani was also in attendance, Barham Ahmed Salih, the Iraqi President, called the opportunity of meeting with the Leader of the Islamic Revolution a great pride, and said: "I have come to Tehran with a clear message, that the factors and elements that bond the two nations of Iraq and Iran together is rooted in history and are, thus, unchangeable."

The Iraqi president referred to his negotiations in Tehran and asserted: "we look forward to expanding cooperation in all areas and promoting it to a level which suits the two nations’ social and cultural relations and common interests."

Barham Ahmed Salih regarded hosting and serving the pilgrims of Imam Hussain (a.s.) in Arbaeen as an honor for the Iraqi nation and government, and emphasized that Iraq would never forget Iran’s support and aids to the country during the fights against Saddam’s autocracy, and during the fights against Takfiri terrorism.

The Iraqi president added: "we deem wisdom, logic, and sagacity of marja’iyah is a great blessing for the stability, peace and progress of Iraq.

He maintained that the priority of the Iraqi officials at the present time consisted of reconstructing infrastructures, confronting corruption, providing services to the Iraqi people, internal reforms, and strengthening national solidarity.

"We seek to make Iraq a powerful country in the region, and we hope we can increasingly benefit from the Islamic Republic of Iran’s cooperation and capacities for reconstructing Iraq," the Iraqi president concluded.

Salih arrived in Tehran Saturday at the head of a delegation, receiving an official welcome from President Hassan Rouhani who said the two neighbors can raise annual bilateral trade to $20 billion from the current level of $12 billion.

Iraqi President also met secretary of the Supreme National Security Council of Iran Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani before meeting Ayatollah Khamenei.

The two-day visit comes at a sensitive time when the US is pressuring regional countries to go along with Washington in “squeezing” Iran under new sanctions unveiled early this month.


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