Iraq pledges ‘excellent’ relations

Iraqi President Fuad Masum speaks to the press during his visit to the holy city of Najaf on November 11, 2014.

Iraqi President Fuad Masum speaks to the press during his visit to the holy city of Najaf on November 11, 2014.

President Fuad Masum of Iraq who left Riyadh on Thursday following his first visit to the Kingdom expressed his keenness to maintain excellent relations with Saudi Arabia.

“The Kingdom is an important player in the region and globally with a significant role in the political, historical and religious spheres. My country shall maintain excellent relations with Riyadh based on mutual understanding,” the president said in an interview with a local daily during his visit.

Masum’s visit to the Kingdom comes with the framework of the new Iraqi government’s strategy to forge relations with its neighbors based on mutual interests.

Masum said that Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah had also stressed the need for increased interactions and better relations between the two countries during his reception on Tuesday.

He also spoke about the need for a secure border between the two countries and chase away terrorists who pose a threat to both nations.

“The Kingdom has opened its doors wide open for us and we, in return have opened our hearts to the Kingdom,” the president said.

Masum said that during his meeting with Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal in Paris, he stressed the need for the Kingdom to open its mission in Baghdad.

Regarding ongoing military operations against the Islamic State and other extremist groups, the president said that aerial strikes by warplanes of the anti-IS coalition were effective but would take time to show results.

 
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