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|Supreme Leader Meets Iraqi President|
Ayatollah Khamenei the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution met this evening with Jalal Talabani the President of Iraq. Speaking during the meeting, which was also attended by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution referred to the presence of the Americans in the region as the source of the problems of Iraq and the region. He reiterated: "In spite of this arrogant presence, current regional events and developments show that the Middle East policy of the US is in decline, and nations should take advantage of this reality."
Ayatollah Khamenei expressed his satisfaction with the firm steps that the Iraqi people and government have taken to solve the problems, further adding: "Having cleared difficult obstacles, the great Iraqi nation and its officials are getting out of the hardships of the recent years, and they should resolve the remaining problems in a wise, patient and courageous way."
Stressing the need to expand and strengthen the relations between Iran and Iraq, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution described Iran-Iraq relations as natural and said that these relations are a sign of genuine friendship and brotherhood that exist between the two countries. "The armed forces of Iran and Iraq fought each other for eight years, but the people of Iran and Iraq do not bear any grudges against each other because they know that it was Saddam's regime that imposed this war on the two brother nations."
Ayatollah Khamenei referred to the good relationship that exists between Iraqi officials and the Islamic Republic of Iran and stated that the efforts to undermine the relations between Iran and Iraq are doomed to failure. He added: "Thanks to the deep religious and cultural bonds, the relations between the two nations will become stronger on a daily basis."
His Eminence said that increasing unity among political parties of Iraq will strengthen the positions adopted by Iraq. "In order to extend their stay in Iraq, the Americans are counting on conflict among political parties of this country, and Iraqi parties must vigilantly prevent them from achieving their goals."
During the meeting, the Iraqi President referred to the depth of the historical relations between Iran and Iraq and said: "The economic, political and cultural relations between Tehran and Baghdad will bring about progress, and we hope that we will be able to rebuild the infrastructures of Iraq, using the technical expertise and experiences of Iran."
President Jalal Talabani added: "Different political groups and parties of Iraq agree that Iraq must achieve progress and development, and they are unanimously opposed to the extension of American troops' stay in Iraq."
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