IRAN and IRAQ: Media Try to Smooth Over Historic Divide

Iran and Iraq have not shared the friendliest of histories but recently both countries seem more willing to set aside their differences in order to collaborate within the media field.

Ezzatollah Zargham, Director of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB), initiated talks with several Iraqi officials as a means of strengthening the two nations’ relationship and cultivating better understanding of their differing cultures. One such official was the Iraqi Culture Minister Saadoun al-Dulaimi, who received the initiative positively. He suggested that both countries continue learning about one another, and such an endeavor might be best achieved via the media.

Al- Dulaimi asserted that Iraqi TV channels need to learn more about Iran’s experiences in TV productions and requested that the IRIB hold education courses for Iraqi TV experts and producers. Such initiatives, Al-Dulaimi hopes, will ultimately help the overarching relationship between Iran and Iraq. Other officials involved in the effort included Minister of Tourism, Liwaa Sumaisem, as well as the President of Iraq, Jalal Talabani. All allegedly approve of the recent increase in media relations. It will be interesting to see how this turn of events will affect the overall diplomacy between Iraq and Iran – if at all.

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