Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) and Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohammed al-Hakim attend a joint press conference in Baghdad, Iraq, on Jan. 13, 2019. Zarif arrived in Baghdad on Sunday for talks with Iraqi leaders to discuss means to enhance bilateral cooperation. (Xinhua)
BAGHDAD, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif arrived in Baghdad on Sunday for talks with Iraqi leaders to discuss means to enhance bilateral cooperation.
Zarif, heading a high-level delegation, was received by his Iraqi counterpart Mohammad al-Hakim at the Baghdad airport. They then held a meeting inside the Foreign Ministry building at the edge of the Green Zone in central Baghdad, the state-run Iraqiya channel reported.
Earlier in the day, the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad said in a press statement that Zarif was scheduled to hold a series of meetings with top Iraqi officials on Monday, including Iraqi President Barham Salih, Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi, and Parliament Speaker Mohammad al-Halbousi.
It said that Zarif will head Tuesday to Erbil, the capital of semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, to meet with Kurdish leaders, before flying Wednesday to the holy Shiite cities of Karbala and Najaf in south of Baghdad.
Zarif's visit came at the time when the United States has restored sanctions on Iran's oil industry as well as its banking and transport sectors, after Washington's pullout from the 2015 landmark nuclear deal in May last year.