Iraqi, Iranian military officials meet in Tehran

May 3, 2019

TEHRAN - General Hamed Atiyeh Khwain, the commander of the Iraqi Army’s Aviation, traveled to Iran on Wednesday at the head of a high-ranking military delegation.

On Thursday, he sat down for talks with General Mohammad Baqeri, the commander of the Joint Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces.

During the meeting, Baqeri highlighted the role of Iran and Iraq as two key powers of the Islamic world, calling for expansion of ties between the two neighboring countries.

“We know Iraq’s security as our own security and we will stand by your country with all our power,” Baqeri told his guest.

The Iraqi official, for his part, expressed thanks to Iran for their help during the Daesh invasion of Iraq in 2014.

“Baghdad was on the verge of collapse and all our allies and friends had retreated and we found nobody else in the field except for our Iranian brothers,” General Khwain said.

Khwain on the same day met with Iranian Defense Minister Amir Hatami. There, the Iranian defense minister called for the enhancement of military and defense cooperation with Iraq, saying collaboration between the two neighbors would serve regional security and stability.

According to a report by Tasnim, Hatami said the common threats and opportunities necessitate closer consultations between Tehran and Baghdad for protecting the interests of the two nations and ensuring regional security and stability.

Highlighting Iran’s contribution to stability and safety in Iraq, Hatami said the Iranian and Iraqi forces’ devotion guarantees security in both countries. He added that Iraq would have disintegrated without steadfast cooperation between the two neighbors.

Defense cooperation between Iran and Iraq will bring about peace, stability and security to the region, General Hatami stated, adding that the two sides are determined to broaden ties.

Also on Thursday, Khwain met with Commander of the Iranian Army Ground Forces Brigadier General Kiomars Heidari, according to IRNA.

Heidari said that Iran and Iraq are set to broaden military cooperation in line with both sides' interests.

Heidari added the Islamic Republic of Iran Army Aviation is regarded as the first military power in the region and there is no rival for it in the Middle East. 

Iran is self-sufficient in various military fields and is able to train pilots and rendering highly standard technical training to Iraqi forces, he said. 

Sharing a very long borderline with Iraq, Iran is ready to help Iraq to “eradicate global arrogance” in the region for ever, he said.

The Iraqi commander, for his part, highlighted significant capability of the Iranian Army and said the grounds for expansion of cooperation between the two countries are well prepared and both forces can play their prominent role to help increase security of the region. 

The Iranian military is highly sophisticated and both sides can help improve security in the region, the Iraqi commander said.

Iraqi Navy Commander Major General Ahmed Jasim Maarij and Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy Commander Rear Admiral Ali Reza Tangsiri also held a meeting in Tehran on Wednesday, discussing ways to enhance military cooperation and holding joint naval programs, Mehr reported.

In July 2017, Iran and Iraq signed an agreement to boost military cooperation on a host of issues, including ways to counter terrorism.

Based on the deal, Tehran and Baghdad will try to promote interaction and share experiences in the fight against terrorism and extremism, work together to ensure border security, and provide each other with training and logistical, technical and military support.

Iraqi Air Defense Commander Lieutenant General Jabar Obeid Kadhim Jabbar also met on Friday with IRGC Aerospace Force Commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh.

Hajizadeh said that Iran’s aerospace force is ready to transfer experience and technical knowhow to Iraqi defense forces.

General Hajizadeh pointed to Iran’s advisory help and support to Iraqi aerospace forces in the fight against ISIL. “From the first days of Iraq's fight against Daesh and Takfiri terrorist groups, Iran’s aerospace force stood by the people, government of armed forces of Iraq at the request of Iraqi government."

The IRGC Aerospace Force chief added Iran and Iraq have established long-standing and amicable relations with each other, which have been a “thorn in the eyes of Global Arrogance, the Zionist regime and also reactionary Arab countries.”

By acquiring world’s latest technology in manufacturing various types of radar systems, command centers and control of ground-to-air missile systems as well as electronic warfare equipment, Iran’s aerospace forces are ready to help Iraqi side boost its defense capabilities, Hajizadeh maintained.

SP/PA

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