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Hariri plans November visit to Iran

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri plans to visit Iran in November in an effort to expand ties with the Islamic Republic, a newspaper close to his political alliance has reported.

Hariri announced his plans to visit Iran in a recent meeting of his Future Movement political party, major Lebanese daily An-Nahar reported, quoted by IRNA on Sunday.

The Lebanese daily, affiliated with the March 14 Alliance which is close to the Lebanese premier, said Hariri’s visit will likely take place in late November.

Another influential Lebanese daily As-Safir also confirmed the reported planned visit and siad that Hariri’s trip to Iran will likely take place on November 28 and 29.

An IRNA report from Beirut, however, quotes an informed source in Hariri’s office as describing the reports as “media speculations.”

While not denying the planned visit, the source stated that the “official date” of the visit has not been announced “though it will not take long for it to be set.”

The Lebanese prime minister is due to visit Russia on Monday and then travel to Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for an official visit.

According to the IRNA report, Abu-Dhabi will be Hariri’s next destination before his visit to Iran.

Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad led a high-level delegation in a landmark visit to Lebanon last October in which he emphasized Iran’s determination to expand ties with the country in all fields.

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