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Ahmadinejad Welcomes Chavez to Tehran


Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has officially welcomed his Venezuelan counterpart to Tehran.

Speaking at a reception at the presidential palace Saturday, Mr. Ahmadinejad said Hugo Chavez is very popular in Iran for his revolutionary views.

The leaders are expected to discuss bilateral issues and to sign energy deals during the two-day visit.

Mr. Chavez is on a two-week world tour, leading a delegation that includes Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez.

The delegation was scheduled to arrive in Tehran Friday, and no reason was given for the one-day delay.

Saturday's visit marks the Venezuelan leader's fifth trip to Iran as president.

Mr. Chavez was in Moscow Thursday, where he sealed a deal to buy Russian fighter jets and helicopters.

The head of Russia's state arms export agency says the contracts are worth more than $3 billion.

The United States has banned arms sales to Venezuela.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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