Iranian president begins visit to neighboring Iraq

AP News
Posted: Jul 18, 2013 8:50 AM
Iranian president begins visit to neighboring Iraq

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iran's outgoing President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has landed in Iraq on his second visit as head of government, highlighting the growing ties between the two Shiite-led neighbors.

Ahmadinejad was greeted on a red carpet laid out on the airport tarmac in Baghdad by Iraqi Vice President Khudier al-Khuzaie.

The Iranian president is expected to meet with top Iraqi officials and visit Shiite holy sites during his two-day visit to the country, which is grappling with its worst outbreak of violence in half a decade.

Ahmadinejad previously visited Iraq in 2008, the first ever by an Iranian president since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution. Iran's president-elect, Hasan Rouhani, is expected to be sworn in and take over from Ahmadinejad in early August.