TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian minister of defense expressed Tehran’s preparedness to equip and strengthen the Iraqi army, noting that the move will contribute to regional security.
“An independent, united, integrated, mighty and safe Iraq would guarantee security in the region and lay the groundwork for development of this country,” Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan said in a meeting with his Iraqi counterpart Saadoun al-Dulaimi here in Tehran on Tuesday.
Heading a high-ranking delegation, the Iraqi defense minister is in Tehran to discuss bilateral defense relations with senior Iranian officials.
Dehqan also added that Iran is ready to support and equip the Arab country’s army to help boost peace and security across the region.
“We believe that Iran and Iraq are located in a sensitive and strategic region and can — on the basis of trust and pursuit of bilateral interests — improve the depth and scope of relations and introduce a new model for regional cooperation,” the Iranian minister stated.
The travel of defense ministers of two Arab countries to Iran in a span of less than a month is a testimony to the Islamic Republic’s resolve to expand the level of regional cooperation in the framework of “constructive interaction doctrine,” Dehqan said, referring to the recent trip of Omani Minister Responsible for Defense Affairs Badr bin Saud bin Harib al-Busaidi to Tehran.
The Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to “make every effort to establish peace and calm in the region” in cooperation with Iraq and other countries, the Iranian minister added.
Dulaimi, for his part, expressed satisfaction with the visit to Iran, and described the purpose of his official trip as “bolstering and further expanding defense cooperation.”
“The Iraqi government’s policy is expansion of friendship and cooperation in the region,” he noted.
During a visit to Iraq in October 2012, former Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi called for the expansion of defense ties between the two countries, saying such partnership would contribute to regional stability and security.
Vahidi also voiced the Islamic Republic’s readiness to assist the Iraqi armed forces to improve their capabilities.
The visit was the first by an Iranian defense minister since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979.
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