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Iranian Vice President Ali Saeedlou has begun his official visit to Cuba. The visit follows on from the meeting President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had with Raul Castro and his brother five months ago as part of his Latin America tour. Political and economic ties between Iran and Cuba have expanded in recent years and Ahmadinejad's tour was aimed to solidify relations with Venezuela, Nicaragua, Cuba and Ecuador, all of which share antipathy towards the United States and support Iran's nuclear programme. The West and Israel have imposed tight sanctions on Iran due to its expanding nuclear development programme. Iran's vice president used the trip to formally invite the Cuban president to the Non-Aligned Movement summit of group states that will be held in Tehran at the end of August.