Jordanian King looks to improve ties with Iran

In meeting with Ahmadinejad's bureau chief, Abdullah says he wants to change tense relations with Islamic Republic; receives invite to Teheran.

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
December 12, 2010 22:34
Jordan's King Abdullah gestures while speaking dur

Jordan King Abdullah 311. (photo credit: AP)

AMMAN, Jordan— Jordan's King Abdullah II on Sunday said he is seeking "practical steps" for improving his country's frosty relations with Iran.

The monarch's appeal contrasted with his regime's frequent criticism of Iran's policies.

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Abdullah made the appeal for better ties during a meeting with Esfandiar Rahim Mashai, the director of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's office, according to an official Jordanian statement. It said Abdullah was invited to visit Teheran.

As early as 2004, Abdullah warned of Iran's growing influence in Iraq and the rest of the region.

In US cables released by WikiLeaks, US diplomats were quoted as saying Jordan warned that Iranian influence could undermine American interests and moderate nations like Jordan, an ally of the US.

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