Last Sunday, Iranian President made his fifth visit to Gulf Sheikhdom of Qatar, the home to America’s biggest military base outside United States at Al-Udeit Air Force Base. It’s the only Sunni-majority Arab country Ahmadinejad has visit that many times since being elected President of the Islamic Republic in 2005. He has visited Saudi Arabia in March 2007; Iraq in March 2008; Afghanistan in March 2010 and is scheduled to visit Lebanon on September 13, 2010 for the first time as the President of IRI.
In a press conference in Doha, after attending an Iftar given in his honor by the ruler of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin-Khalifa al-Thani – Ahmadinejad said: “Any (military) measure against Iran would be tantmount to the elimination of the Zionist regime from the political geography (of the region)”.
Ahmadinejad was accompanied by FM Mottaki, Chief of staff Esfandier Rahim-Hashaei, Health Minister Dasjerdi and Vice-president Nasrin Soltankhah.
Qatar’s friendly relations with Tehran are in stark contrast to those of the usual Middle East heavyweights—Egypt, Jordan and
Saudi Arabia. On Ahmadinejad’s latest visit, a defense cooperation agreement was inked between the two nations. The emir also officially backed last May’s nuclear fuel-swap deal arranged by Turkey and Brazil and supports Iran’s development of a peaceful nuclear energy program.
The Qatar ruler became the first Sunni Arab monarch to visit Hizbullah’s stronghold (South lebanon) in July 2010. Hizbullah’s commander in South Lebanon, Sheikh Nabil Kaouk, and other Hezbollah officials were at hand to welcome the Emir.
“I am happy to be here, in this area that was rebuilt after it was destroyed,” Al Thani said in the town of Bint Jbeil, which the Zionazi bombings reduced to rubble in the 2006 war.
“I thank the mujahideen who sacrificed their lives” to defend Lebanon, he added in a reference to Hizbullah fighters.