Abd Allah, who is on an official visit in Washington, said Iranians were seriously concerned that the current violence in Iraq could lead to civil war.

“I think with us there is an agreement that a break up in Iraq would be a tremendous problem for all of us,” said the King in an interview on Tuesday with a US television station.

Abd Allah, who was in Tehran earlier this month, said President Muhammad Khatami believed tensions between Iraq’s religious and ethnic factions could be a destabilising factor.

“They see the destabilisation, the ethnic conflict - Shia on Shia and Sunni on Shia - being disastrous for all of us. And so, there is enough there for us to agree upon and work together on.”

The King is scheduled to meet US President George Bush and Secretary of State Colin Powell to discuss the current situation in the Middle East.