“As we proved that we stand beside the Iraqi people in fighting Daesh, we will stand beside the Iraqi government to help establish stability and make progress,” Rouhani stated in phone call.

He said Iran attaches great importance to Iraq’s independence, political stability, national sovereignty, and integrity.

“We always have to be careful about plots which target interests of the Iraqi people and the region,” he noted.

Rouhani also highlighted the importance of regional peace and stability.

Elsewhere, he called for expanding economic cooperation and implementing agreements between the two countries.

For his part, Kadhimi said that it is essential for two countries to expand economic relations.

The prime minister described Iran as a “friendly” and “brotherly” country.

“We will never forget Iran’s help to Iraq in fighting Daesh and we seek expansion of relations in various areas,” he said.

Prime Minister Kadhimi also received Iranian ambassador to Baghdad Iraj Maon Saturday, discussing banking cooperation, issuing visa for citizens, Khoramshahr-Bara railway projects among other things.

Kadhimi formally took office early Thursday after parliament approved a partial cabinet, taking the reins amid a fiscal crisis and a health pandemic.

A total of 255 of parliament’s 329 members took part in the vote, which was scheduled to take place at 9:00 pm local but began well after midnight after last-minute changes to appease political parties, AFP reported.

They approved 15 ministers out of a prospective 22-seat cabinet, with seven ministries still empty.

Kadhimi was nominated in April, months after his predecessor Adel Abdel Mahdi stepped down – the first time a premier has resigned before the end of his term since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

The new government is set to hold early elections, but Kadhimi admitted it would face a litany of other challenges: navigating an economic crisis spurred by oil price crashes and the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

“I am honored and privileged to be charged with forming the government during the transitional period and having to deal with the current crises that only exacerbated since the overthrow of the authoritarian regime in 2003,” he told gathered MPs.