BAGHDAD, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- The Iraqi government denied Wednesday it had struck any deal with Iran to purchase arms and ammunition from the neighboring country.
A Defense Ministry statement said companies from many countries, including Iran, offered to supply the Iraqi army with arms and ammunition, "but the trade-off was in favor of other companies and there was no signing of any contract with any Iranian company."
On Tuesday, Iranian Ambassador to Baghdad Hassan Danaeifar also denied such a claim, saying: "No agreement on military and arms cooperation has been inked with the Iraqi side so far," refuting recent Western media reports on an Iran-Iraq arms deal.
However, Iran will be ready to consider such a request if it is filed by its friendly neighbor Iraq, Danaeifar told Fars.
Earlier, the standoff was sparked by Hassan al-Senied, a senior lawmaker from Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's Dawa Party, who told reporters that Iraq is negotiating buying weapons from Iran and insisted this was within its right and violated no international sanctions.
Earlier this week, some Western media reported that "Iran has signed a deal to sell Iraq arms and ammunition worth 195 million U. S. dollars." If confirmed, the deal would be seen as a violation of U.S. and UN sanctions on Iran over its disputed nuclear program.