Iran and Iraq agreed to boost defence cooperation during a visit of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki to Tehran on Monday, Iran's official IRNA news agency said, giving few details on the content of the agreement.
Iran's Defence Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar signed a memorandum of understanding on defence cooperation with his Iraqi counterpart, Abdul Qader Jassim, IRNA said.
Mine clearance and the search for soldiers missing in action would be part of the planned cooperation, it said.
"The two parties, stressing the importance of defence cooperation in the balanced expansion of ties ... called for development of this sort of cooperation with the aim of strengthening peace and stability in the region," IRNA said.
Earlier on Monday, Iran's supreme leader told Maliki that the presence of U.S. forces in Iraq was the biggest obstacle to its development as a united country.
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei hit out at the occupiers in Iraq at a time when Baghdad is negotiating with the United States on a new agreement aimed at giving a legal basis for U.S. occupation troops to stay in Iraq after Dec. 31, when their U.N. mandate expires.
Iran blames the presence of U.S. troops for the violence that followed the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq five years ago.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 09 Haziran 2008, 16:50