TEHRAN (Dispatches) – Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei told visiting Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani here Sunday that corruption generated by the U.S. and its friends is the cause of the inappropriate situation in the region.
"The current situation in the region calls more than before for strengthening communication among the regional countries and not being influenced by foreign insinuations,” the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the Islamic Republic has repeatedly declared that it is ready for closer cooperation with the countries of the region.
The Leader described the current situation in the region as inappropriate. "The cause of this situation is the corruption being stirred by America and its friends and the only way to deal with it is to rely on inter-regional cooperation.”
Ayatollah Khamenei touched on good political ties between Iran and Qatar, saying their economic relations are not on the same level and that the two countries need to expand their cooperation in common areas more than ever.
"Of course, certain parties who have come to this region from the other part of the world are not interested in the expansion of cooperation among the regional countries, but this issue has nothing to do with them and the regional countries and nations do not accept such bullying and interference anymore,” he added.
The Qatari emir pointed to the difficult situation in the region and said he completely agrees with Ayatollah Khamenei’s remarks about the necessity for enhanced regional cooperation.
"Qatar believes that comprehensive dialogue should be held among the regional countries,” Sheikh Tamim said.
He also touched on his talks with President Hassan Rouhani, saying the two sides agreed to hold their joint commission meeting within three months.
The Qatari emir further expressed hope that the two countries would increase the level of their economic ties to the same level as their political relations.
Sheikh Tamim thanked Iran for supporting his country, particularly against the Saudi-led sanctions against Doha.
Speaking at a meeting with President Rouhani earlier in the day, Sheikh Tamim said his country attaches special importance to cooperation with Iran as an influential player in the region.
He said any security coordination among regional countries will be of no avail in the absence of the Islamic Republic.
Qatar believes heightened tensions in the region will not benefit any country, the emir said. He also lauded the Islamic Republic for pursuing a wise and prudent policy toward the regional developments.
Ahead of the visit, state-run Qatar News Agency (QNA) said the talks would focus on "bilateral relations between the two countries and ways of promoting and enhancing them, as well as the latest developments in the region and the regional and international issues of mutual concern.”
Last Saturday, Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Muhammad bin
Abdulrahman Al Thani visited Tehran after the U.S. assassination of the Middle East’s most prominent anti-terror commander General Qassem Soleimani.
Qatar is close to the U.S. and hosts Washington’s largest military base in the region, but it also enjoys strong ties with Tehran, with whom it shares the world’s largest gas field.
President Rouhani told the Qatari foreign minister then that Washington would pay a heavy price for its assassination and on Wednesday, Iran pounded two U.S. bases in Iraq with a volley of ballistic missiles.
On Saturday, NBC News said the terrorist U.S. operation used Israeli intelligence and was run from the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) headquarters in Qatar.