President: Iran wants friendship with all
Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Thursday a powerful Iran is the best friend for and supporter of the neighboring and regional states.
Ahmadinejad made the remark while addressing a ceremony to mark the Sacred Defence Week, started Thursday morning in the premises of the mausoleum of the Founder of the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini. "We want dignity and greatness for all human beings," Ahmadinejad said, according to Irna.
"Iran is at the service of peace and progress of regional states. Our nation wants nothing but happiness and prosperity for others and we do not seek our authority in opposition to the interests of neighbors.
"We stretch our hands of friendship to all. The Iranian nation is very powerful in defending its territorial integrity, independence and national interests," he added.
The Iranian president said the Iranian nation has been the vanguard of justice, spirituality, peace and tranquility in the world. "Today the enemies have found out the Iranian nation is really serious in defending its ideals, territorial integrity and the achievements of the Islamic Revolution and the Islamic system.
"The Iranian nation has always favored peace and tranquility for all nations as well as justice and equality in relations with them. We are after friendly ties and amity with all states.
"We want the Persian Gulf to become the gulf of friendship," he said.
Regarding the occupation of Iraq, he said, "Those who have come to Iraq from a distance of thousands of kilometers and occupied this country, are responsible for the security of the Iraqi nation.
"We observe a meaningful link between the continuation of insecurity and occupation in Iraq. "We call for the establishment of a broad-based popular government, restoration of security and cessation of occupation in Iraq so that appropriate grounds would be prepared for the country's reconstruction, progress and development."