Iraq enjoys good ties with Iran, Arab countries: PM Kadhimi

October 4, 2020 - 15:40

TEHRAN – Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi has said his country enjoys good relations with both Iran and Arab countries.

“We are not ashamed of our relations with the U.S. or Iran or Saudi Arabia or any relations that benefit the Iraqi nation and drive down our problems to zero,” ISNA quoted Kadhimi as saying, citing Baghdad Today.

The Iraqi prime minister further said that Iraq does not intervene in the internal affairs of other countries.

“We have good relations with Arab countries. We also have good relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran and we try to preserve these relations,” he said, adding that some countries wish such relations get weakened.

He also said some politicians openly criticize U.S. policies, but in reality, they are obedient to America in dark rooms.

Iraqi soil has faced high tensions between the U.S. and Iran since January.

On January 3, U.S. President Donald Trump ordered airstrikes that martyred Iran’s top anti-terror general Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the second-in-command of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), in Baghdad’s international airport.

In the early hours of January 8, the IRGC fired dozens of ballistic missiles at a military airbase hosting U.S. forces in Iraq as part of its promised “tough revenge” for the U.S. terrorist attack.

In remarks in July, Kadhimi said his country will not allow any threat against Iran from the Iraqi soil. He made the remarks during a joint press conference with President Hassan Rouhani in Tehran.

In August, an Iraqi source said Kadhimi has candidly told Trump that his country will not let the United States to take any actions against Iran or any other neighboring country from the Iraqi soil.

“The Iraqi prime minister was brave and candid in a meeting with Trump and told him that we will not let Iraq be turned into a platform to target Iran, Turkey or any other neighboring countries,” the source was quoted as saying by Iraqi media.

Also, Iraqi President Barham Salih said in June 2019 that his country under no circumstances will allow the U.S. to use its bases in Iraq to launch an attack on neighboring Iran.

“We do not want our territory to be a staging post for any hostile action against any of our neighbors, including Iran,” Salih said in an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour in London.

“This is definitely not part of the agreement between the Iraqi government and the United States.”

Meanwhile, Tehran’s Ambassador to Baghdad Iraj Masjedi on Saturday reaffirmed Iran’s support for stability in Iraq and strengthening economic and social ties between the two neighboring countries.

Masjedi made the remarks in a meeting with Salih, during which the two sides discussed the latest developments in Iraq, the prospects of relations between Tehran and Baghdad and the significance of adherence to negotiations and reinforcing regional peace and security, as well as the importance of reducing tensions in the region.

The two sides also stressed the need to beef up measures to protect diplomatic places and centers in Iraq.

MH/PA

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