TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani offered his congratulations to Mohammed Rikan Hadeed al-Halbousi on his election as the new speaker of Iraq’s parliament, expressing hope that parliamentary ties between the two neighbors would develop in Halbousi’s tenure.

In a message released on Saturday afternoon, Larijani praised bilateral relations between Tehran and Baghdad in all areas, parliamentary ties in particular, as very close over the past years and hoped that efforts would be focused on further improving the ties.

The great nation of Iraq has a “special place” in the minds of the people and government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the parliament speaker said.

“God willing, we will witness development, welfare and peace for the noble Iraqi nation after further establishment of security in that country,” he added.  

Earlier on Saturday, Iraq’s parliament elected al-Halbousi as speaker, paving the way for the establishment of a new government four months after the national election.

Halbousi’s election marks the start of a 90-day process outlined in the constitution, designed to eventually lead to a new government.

Before running in May’s national election as a candidate, Halbousi was the governor of Anbar province. He had previously served in Iraq’s parliament, from 2014 to 2017.