People look at the carpets displayed at the Iran section of the Baghdad International Fair, in Baghdad, Iraq November 10, 2018. REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani
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While Saudi Arabia courted Iraqi leaders behind closed doors over the weekend, its archfoe Iran made a more public showing by turning out at the Baghdad International Fair, a shop window for business in Iraq. An entire hangar was set aside for some of the 60 Iranian firms participating. Iran's place as a trade partner was made plain at the annual Baghdad fair, which opened Saturday. Iran's ambassador attended and its diplomats toured Iranian stalls.The amount of Iranian companies almost doubled.The 2003 United States-led invasion of Iraq that toppled Saddam Hussein empowered political parties representing Iraq's Shiite majority, some close to Iran.After Washington restored sanctions recently, some Iraqis might see risk in importing Iranian products, but that seems unlikely to stop them, especially in border areas.
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