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Regional News of Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Source: GNA

Prez Mahama promises to strengthen relations with Iran

President John Dramani Mahama on Monday promised to invigorate and strengthen relations that had over the years existed between Ghana and Iran.

“In the areas of oil and gas, agriculture, health and education, Ghana will strengthen our relations with Iran to share their experiences,” he said.

President Mahama made the statement when Dr Ali Akbar Salehi, Iranian Minister for Foreign Affairs led a delegation to call on him at the Castle, Osu.

The delegation was at the Castle to congratulate President Mahama on his inauguration, and to convey a special message from President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

President Mahama promised to form a joint permanent Commission between the two countries as soon as his Ministers were appointed.

He commended the Iranian government for establishing a Clinic and Islamic University in Ghana, adding that the Iran Clinic located at Adabraka in Accra was not only affordable, but was also serving a lot of deprived people in the area.

On agriculture, President Mahama pledged to strengthen relations with Iran to step up commercial rice production and agricultural mechanization to ensure food security in the country.

He said other Memoranda of Understanding signed between the two countries on Vocational Training and the expansion of the Iran Clinic and the Islamic University would be upheld to bring more benefits to Ghanaians.

Mr Salehi said his delegation's attendance of President Mahama’s inauguration was a demonstration of their total commitment to strengthen bilateral relations with Ghana in areas of Health, Science and education.

He said the expansion of the Iran Clinic would enable them to admit and treat about 1,500 patients a day.

He extended the invitation of President Ahmadinejad to President Mahama to visit Iran for them to further strengthen the relations that had existed between the two countries.

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