TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani offered congratulations to the Lebanese people and government on the Arab country’s Independence Day and called for closer cooperation between the two countries in all spheres.

In a message to Lebanon's newly elected president, Michel Aoun, on Wednesday, President Rouhani extended his felicitations to Aoun on the country’s Independence Day and expressed confidence that under Aoun’s presidency and with the unity of various political groups, Lebanon will witness prosperity, dignity and stability. 

“Like in the past, the Islamic Republic of Iran will side with the resistant people and government of Lebanon and is ready to promote mutual cooperation in all fields,” he noted.

Lebanon gained independence from France 73 years ago, in 1943, when France was occupied by Germany during World War II.

On Tuesday, Michel Aoun attended a military parade in central Beirut, the first such celebration in two years, to mark the Independence Day.

Aoun, 81, secured the presidency by winning the support of 83 lawmakers, well above the absolute majority of 65 needed to win.

Lebanon had been without a head of state for 29 months after Michel Suleiman stepped down as president at the end of his term in May 2014.