RELIGION

Jordan FM reassures Iraq after anti-Shiite Muslim protest

Jordan's foreign minister has assured his Iraqi counterpart that the kingdom seeks to maintain good relations, after Jordanian protesters burned pictures of Shiite Muslim leaders, including a former Iraqi prime minister.

The official news agency Petra says Ayman Safadi told Iraq's Ibrahim al-Jaafari that those involved were detained and would face trial.

Sunday's phone call came 10 days after Jordan's King Abdullah II criticized the regional ambitions of Shiite-led Iran in an interview. An Iranian official reportedly dismissed the king's comments as "silly and careless." Jordan summoned Iran's ambassador in protest.

On Friday, several dozen protesters in northern Jordan burned photos of Shiite Muslim leaders in the region in an anti-Iran protest.

Iran exerts a strong influence over neighboring Iraq. Jordan is part of the region's Sunni Muslim camp.