Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has accepted an invitation to attend the Non-Aligned Movement Summit in Tehran, extended by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Sunday. This will most likely be Abbas' first visit to the Islamic Republic.
Abbas received the invitation from Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian during a meeting in Amman on Sunday. The Palestinian leader thanked the Iranian deputy minister for the invitation, sent his regards to Ahmadinejad and promised to attend the summit.
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The Iranian president also invited his Egyptian counterpart, the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi to attend the summit. According to Iran's state news agency IRNA, Ahmadinejad told Morsi that Tehran is not placing any restrictions on expanding bilateral ties which had been cut off in 1979 following the Egypt- Israel peace treaty.
Haniyeh and Ahmadinejad in Tehran (Photo: Reuters)
He stressed that Iran is willing to cooperate with the new Egyptian government in regional and international issues. Morsi, on his part, accepted the invitation and stressed that the Non-Aligned Movement is protecting the interests of Islamic and other developing states.
Iran will receive the rotating presidency of the movement from Egypt for three years during the Tehran summit.
In the past, Abbas accused Iran of impeding reconciliation efforts between Fatah and Hamas several times while Ahmadinejad slammed him for his lack of mandate to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinians.
Meanwhile, Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad is urging Arab countries to keep their promises and send tens of millions of dollars to his cash-strapped government.
AP contributed to this report
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