Iran on Saturday criticized U.S. President George W. Bush's negative comments over Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's close ties with Tehran, saying the U.S. needs a "wise" leader to regain its damaged global image, the official IRNA news agency reported.
"Wrong policies and incorrect decisions of the U.S. government caused the instability in Iraq, even the American people don't like the illogical approach of their government, the U.S. Congress election was a proof," Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini was quoted as saying.
Hosseini was referring to Bush's Republican party's defeat in the U.S. Congress last November by the Democrats. "The Americans need a wise leader to regain its global images," he added.
During Maliki's visit to Tehran, Iranian top leaders in the past two days have vowed to help Iraq recover its peace and security while telling Maliki that the withdrawal of the American forces from that war-torn country was vital to its security and stability.
For his part, Maliki said Iran was "positive and constructive" in helping his government to bring security in the war-torn country, underlining that "Iran, Iraq and other countries in the region must fight against terrorism."
However, U.S. President George W. Bush Thursday showed his disagreement over Maliki's statement of Iran's "constructive" role in Iraq.
"I will have to have a heart to heart with my friend(Maliki) the prime minister if Iranians are constructive, since I don't believe they are," Bush said at a press conference at the White House.
Maliki arrived Tehran Wednesday morning on a three-day visit for talks with Iranian leaders on improving the security situation in Iraq. It was Maliki's second visit to Iran since he took office in 2006.
During his visit, Maliki met with Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Judiciary Head Ayatollah Mahmoud Shahroudi, Majlis (Iran's parliament) Speaker Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel as well as other senior officials.
The U.S. has repeatedly accused Tehran of supporting Iraqi insurgents to fight with coalition forces and Iraqi government, but Iran have denied all the accusations, saying Washington was trying to find excuses for its failed policy in the Mideast.