IRNA – Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qasemi stressed that Iran’s presence in Iraq was at the request of the Iraqi government to help that country in fighting Daesh (ISIS) and other terrorist groups.
‘Thankfully due to struggles of the Iraqi government and people and Iran’s help, the conditions of Iraq have experienced serious transformation that resulted in the liberation of Iraqi land and the expulsion of terrorists from that country,’ Qasemi said.
He reiterated that there was a feeling that there was no need for Iran’s presence in Iraq at the present time, and as we were there at the request of the Iraqi government with a specific purpose, we felt in a new situation that there was no need for us to be present in Iraq and that the Iraqi military could confront the terrorists.’
The spokesman also noted, ‘If conditions change and again the Iraqi government needs Iran’s consultative help, we will certainly help the Iraqi people and government, given the kind of relations we have with the country and the positions we have had on terrorism, security and stability.’
Qasemi also responded to another question about the visit of the Secretary-General of Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement (PIJ) Ziad Al-Nakhaleh to Tehran and his meeting with the Foreign Minister, ‘Given the Islamic Republic’s stances on the important issue of Palestine and the longstanding ties that Iran has had with the Palestinian people and groups over the past four decades, whenever they needed, we express our views in trips and meetings.’
He continued, ‘Al-Nakhaleh trip to Tehran was also carried out in this context to examine the latest developments in this sensitive period, and there were good talks in Tehran, and, given our unchanging positions regarding the occupation of the Zionist regime, eventually this consultation will continue.’