Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

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Iraq Urges Neighbors to Stop Terrorists From Entering Country


04 May 2007


U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has called on Iran to stop arming extremists and supporting terrorism in Iraq.

At the conclusion of a two-day conference on Iraq in Sharm el-Sheik, Egypt, Rice said Iran is a culture and a country that should play a positive role in the international community.

At a meeting Thursday with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem, she called on Syria to stop the flow of foreign fighters across its border. She said foreign fighters are the main source of suicide bombers in Iraq.

But Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki Friday blamed Iraq's predicament on the United States, saying the occupation of Iraq has only worsened the situation. He told reporters Iran has consistently been part of the solution and has always supported calm and peace in the region. He said the polices of the occupation forces have failed and must be corrected.

Earlier, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki urged Iraq's neighbors to stop the flow of militants and deny them access to any financial and political help.

In other developments, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiar Zebari said Iran and the United States held what he called "expert level" talks on the sidelines of the conference.

The United States says it wants to see Iran and Syria increase control over their borders and stop supporting militias and insurgents in Iraq.

Rice spoke for about a half-hour Thursday with her Syrian counterpart on the sidelines of the conference. It was the first high-level contact between their two countries in more than two years.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, and AFP.



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