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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

President Khatami discusses Iraqi situation with Indian prime minister

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, May 28, IRNA -- President Mohammad Khatami here on Friday 
said that Iran and India should show utmost cooperation in the 
international campaign to combat terrorism, drug trafficking and 
violence. 
In a telephone conversation with newly elected Indian Prime 
Minister Manmohan Singh, President Khatami expressed pleasure with 
their countries` joint efforts to help reconstruct war-devastated 
Afghanistan. 
He said that Iran is keen to further expand its multilateral 
cooperation with India, and hoped that current cooperation would 
get a boost in the near future. 
"India is a great nation that plays a prominent role in 
maintaining international peace and security," President Khatami 
said. 
The Iranian president welcomed the resolve of India and its 
neighbor, Pakistan, to revive their stalled peace process, saying 
efforts to resolve their longstanding dispute would contribute to 
boosting peace and security in the region. 
President Khatami reiterated his government`s policy that a 
withdrawal of US-led occupation forces from Iraq was a prerequisite 
to the restoration of national sovereignty to that country and would 
enable it to resume its status as a member of the international 
community. 
He took the occasion to felicitate Prime Minister Manmohan 
Singh on his assumption of office as India`s prime minister, and 
expressed hope his tenure would be an era of great opportunities 
and development for India and the entire sub-continent. 
The Indian prime minister, for his part, said Iran and India 
have enjoyed longstanding amity and that New Delhi favors stronger 
ties and cooperation with Tehran. 
"The two countries have made great strides to boost their 
bilateral relations. We are willing to strengthen friendship with 
Iran," the prime minister said. 
Singh called for exchange of visits of the two countries` top 
officials to lead Iran-India relations to a more dynamic era. 
On the Iraqi situation, the Indian prime minister said that India 
holds the same stance with Iran on the necessity of restoring peace 
and security to the conflict-ridden country. He also stressed the 
necessity of having the international community participate in 
efforts to resolve the country`s problems and the suffering of its 
people. 
On Indian relations with Pakistan, Prime Minister Manmohan 
Singh said that New Delhi is committed to continuing the stalled 
dialogue with Islamabad. 
1416/LS/210 



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