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THURSDAY, 24 APR 2014
09:04 AM Beirut time
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European Parliament delegation arrives in Tehran
Agence France Presse
File - Iranian parliament speaker Ali Larijani listens to a speech by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at the parliament in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
File - Iranian parliament speaker Ali Larijani listens to a speech by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at the parliament in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
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TEHRAN: A delegation from the European Parliament arrived in Iran on Friday for talks with Iranian officials, the official IRNA news agency reported.

The team of eight European lawmakers will meet parliament speaker Ali Larijani and the head of parliament's national security and foreign policy committee Alaeddin Boroujerdi during their six-day visit, IRNA said.

The meetings will start on Saturday, state broadcaster IRIB said on its website.

The delegation has been tasked with rebuilding links with politicians and broaching human rights issues, a member of the group told AFP before the visit.

Belgian MEP Isabelle Durant has said that the delegation would put "difficult questions on the table".

There will also be informal meetings with opponents of the regime and human rights activists, she said, including filmmaker Jafar Panahi and lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh.

The delegation is composed of leftwing politicians from Finland, Austria, Germany and the Netherlands. Last October, three socialist MEPs visited Iran but their trip was not endorsed by the parliament.

In October 2012, the Parliament cancelled a planned trip to Iran after authorities refused to allow delegates to meet Panahi and Sotoudeh.

Fars news agency reported a separate French parliamentary delegation will arrive in Tehran on Saturday.

 
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