Iraq will stand by Iran against US sanctions: FM

<p style="text-align: left;">Iraq stands by Iran against U.S. sanctions, Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohamed Alhakim said Sunday.

Alhakim held talks in Baghdad with his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif, who arrived in the Iraqi capital on Saturday for discussions with Iraqi officials.

The top Iraqi diplomat said bilateral relations between Baghdad and Tehran were the focus of Zarif's visit to Iraq, Anadolu reported.

"We are against the U.S. sanctions against Iran," Alhakim said.

"We believe economic sanctions against Iran are not helpful," he said. "Communications are underway with regional states to reach a satisfactory solution to all parties."

Zarif, for his part, described his talks with Iraqi officials as "very good".

He said both Tehran and Baghdad have started to build a railway between the two countries.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran have mounted steadily since U.S. President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the U.S. from a landmark nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 group of nations.

The Trump administration has also re-imposed sanctions on Iran&rsquo;s banking and energy sectors, while Iran has threatened to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz to U.S. oil shipments.

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