Mukherjee said India cherishes its cordial and friendly relations with Iraq.
"The two countries have historical ties starting from the great Mesopotamian civilization and thousands of Indians undertake annual pilgrimage to the Holy Shrines of Najaf and Karbala. With the emergence of democracy in Iraq, relations between the two countries are entering a new phase," he said.
The President said Iraq has become India's second largest crude oil supplier.
Mukherjee said the different MoUs to be signed during Iraqi PM's visit would establish the institutional framework to enhance co-operation between the two countries.
Mukherjee said India has been a committed partner in Iraq's progress and development and will remain so as Iraq undertakes its reconstruction and rebuilding efforts.
The Iraqi Prime Minister warmly reciprocated the President's words and said India and Iraq were two friendly countries seeking to strengthen their relations and maintain a high level of contacts.
He said India and Iraq complement each other.
Nouri Kamil al-Maliki said India's experience in democracy has been applauded throughout the world and there is much that Iraq can learn from the Indian experience.
--IBNS (Posted on 24-08-2013)