|Ahmadinejad wishes to visit Gaza||
TEHRAN – Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is due to take part in an Islamic summit in Egypt which begins today, expressed his desire to visit the neighboring Gaza Strip in an interview with the Al Mayadeen news channel on Monday, Reuters reported.
The Iranian president arrived in Cairo on Tuesday and was officially welcomed by Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.
Asked in the interview whether he would visit Gaza while in Cairo or before his term as president expires in mid-summer, he replied, “My wish is bigger than this. I wish to pray in (Beit-ul-Moqaddas) after complete liberation.”
“If they allow it, I would go to Gaza to visit the people,” he said, without saying whose authority he would seek.
The Persian service of the Fars News Agency reported on Tuesday that Hamas had welcomed Ahmadinejad’s wish to visit the Gaza Strip.
Egypt controls the crossing with Gaza and leaders of Qatar and Malaysia have both visited the enclave from Egyptian territory in the last six months.
Ahmadinejad’s visit to Cairo is the first for an Iranian president since the 1979 Iranian revolution ruptured diplomatic ties between the two most populous countries in the Middle East.
He is heading Iran’s delegation to a summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in Cairo.
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