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Abu Mazen to Visit Iran Before Summit (INN-ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) 02/02/05)Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/news.php3?id=76326 INN} ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS INN} ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS Articles-Index-TopPublishers-Index-Top
Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) has more scheduled for next week than his meeting with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. The PA Chairman plans to visit Iran as well.

Just hours after the announcement of a diplomatic summit between PM Sharon and Abu Mazen this coming Tuesday, the Israeli daily Maariv reported Abu Mazen’s plan to visit Iran in coming days – even before Tuesday’s summit.

Iran has extended an invitation to Abu Mazen, inviting the PA leader to visit Tehran. The invitation was extended as Abu Mazen visited Turkey. A PA official told Reuters today that “Abu Mazen did receive an invitation to visit Iran. He accepted the invitation and will decide on a date the moment he returns.”

A source in the Iranian Foreign Ministry told Maariv that the visit would indeed take place in the very near future. The source said that the invitation was issued because Iran is interested in “friendly relations with the Palestinian government just as it has with the various Palestinian factions.”

The Iranian source stressed that Iran’s invitation should not be construed as an endorsement of any sort of “peace process,” though “Iran has always supported a Palestinian state.” Iran has also long supported various terror groups, including Hamas and Hizbullah.

Already in December 2004, Iranian newspaper Al-Watan reported that the PA was conducting talks with Syria and Iran. The talks were spearheaded by Fatah Chairman Farouk Khadoumi during his visit to Tehran. (IsraelNationalNews © 02/02/05)

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