Xi greets new Iraqi president

President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to Barham Salih for his election as Iraqi president.

China and Iraq have a traditional friendship, and the two countries have deepened political mutual trust, enhanced practical cooperation and boosted people-to-people exchanges, Xi said, adding that he is satisfied with that.

Xi wished that under the new leadership of Iraq, the country could steadily push forward its process of political reconciliation and economic rebuilding and continue to make greater progress in exploring a path that fits its own national condition.

Noting that he attaches great importance to the development of China-Iraq relations, Xi said that he would like to make joint efforts with the Iraqi leader to take the opportunity of the 60th anniversary of China-Iraq diplomatic relations to push the development of bilateral ties and benefit the people of both countries.

On Oct 2, the Iraqi parliament elected Salih as Iraqi president, who later named veteran politician Adel Abdul-Mahdi as prime minister-designate and tasked him with forming the new government for the next four years.

According to the Iraqi Constitution, the prime minister-designate has 30 days to put together a cabinet and present it to parliament for approval. He had set Tuesday as the date for all qualified Iraqis to nominate themselves to be ministers of the new cabinet through a website.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday confirmed United Nations support for Iraq and the continuing of its programs in the war-torn country.

In a phone call, Guterres congratulated Abdul-Mahdi for his appointment to form the government.

Guterres confirmed the UN's backing to Iraq in all aspects, including the continuation of its programs, as well as the need for stability and reconstruction.

For his part, Abdul-Mahdi confirmed Iraq's need to increase the international community's support during the next stage in various aspects, particularly after Iraq achieved victory over the Islamic State group, and its efforts to reconstruct Iraqi cities and provide services to its people, the statement said.

On Dec 9, Iraqi prime minister Haider al-Abadi officially declared full liberation of Iraq from the IS group.