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Iraqis to attend Iran-US talks: Official

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Baghdad, April 3, IRNA
Iran-Iraq-Talks
A number of Iraqi officials are to take part in Iran-US talks on Iraq, it was announced here Sunday.

Without elaborating on the date of the talks, a member of the United Iraqi Alliance, Abbas al-Bayati, said Iraqi officials will only take part in the first session of Iran-US talks.

Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Larijani voiced Iran's readiness to hold talks with the US on Iraqi issues on March 16.

Addressing a closed-door session of the Majlis, he said Tehran accepts request made by head of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) Abdul Aziz al-Hakim to negotiate with Washington on Iraq.

Since the call is made by a prominent Iraqi Muslim leader, Tehran accepts it in order to resolve problems in Iraq and to help establish an independent government and real freedom in that country, Larijani noted.

Al-Hakim had said Baghdad wanted the wise Iranian leadership to open a clear dialogue with America regarding Iraq, a dialogue for the benefit of the Iraqi people.

In their separate meetings with Iran's charge d'affaires to Iraq Hassan Kazemi Qomi in the past two days, the Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari underlined the need for acceleration of Tehran-Washington talks on Iraq.

They said direct negotiations between Iran and the US on Iraqi issues will help settle crises in the entire Middle East, including Iraq.

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