BAGHDAD, June 25 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi is scheduled to pay an official visit in the upcoming days to Iran before heading to Saudi Arabia for talks with leaders of the two countries, an official news agency reported on Saturday.
The state-run Iraqi News Agency (INA) quoted sources as saying that the two trips will take place within the framework of direct talks between Iran and Saudi Arabia that were held previously in Baghdad.
During his upcoming visits, al-Kadhimi would discuss several issues, including diplomatic relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia, according to INA.
On June 16, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein said in a phone conversation with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian that "Iraq is ready to continue facilitating direct talks between the Saudi and Iranian foreign ministers in Baghdad to restore relations to normal," according to a statement by the Iraqi Foreign Ministry.
To improve bilateral relations and ease regional tension, Baghdad hosted four rounds of direct talks between Iran and Saudi Arabia last year, and the fifth round was held in April this year.
In response to the attacks on Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran after the kingdom executed a Shiite cleric, Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Iran in early 2016.
The two rivals' strained relations showed signs of improvement after they resumed direct talks on normalizing diplomatic relations in April 2021.