Iranian VP extends 'respect for victory over Israel'

Meets Lebanese Foreign Minister on "solidarity visit."

August 30, 2006 01:42


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Iran's vice president arrived in Beirut on Tuesday for talks with Lebanese officials over ways Iran could help rebuild Lebanon. Ali Saeedlou crossed into Lebanon from Syria, leading a large Iranian delegation that included Housing Minister Muhammad Saeedi Kia. They were met at the border by Lebanese Foreign Minister Fawzi Salloukh. Iran, a primary source of money and weapons for Hizbullah, is widely believed to have opened its treasury for Lebanon's reconstruction, which is being spearheaded by the Islamist group. Hizbullah has been giving out cash - $12,000 to people who lost their homes in the IAF bombing campaign. More than 15,000 housing units were destroyed, the group said. Saeedlou, who said he was on a "solidarity" visit, met with Lebanese President Emile Lahoud in the capital. "We have come as an official delegation to say that we in the Islamic Republic of Iran put all resources at the disposal of Lebanon's reconstruction and development process," Saeedlou said after the meeting. Earlier, at the Masnaa border crossing between Syria and Lebanon, Saeedlou said he was carrying "a message of respect and pride for the Lebanese people who achieved victory against the Israeli aggression."

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