Tribal leaders meeting in the religious city of Najaf denounced what they described as â€œIranian interference in Iraqi political affairs.â€
The meeting was arranged by Najafâ€™s Tribal Council and included representatives from the mainly Arab Shiite tribes in central Iraq.
Major tribes have followers among both Arab Shiites and Sunnis and have been holding regular meetings in the past two years.
â€œWe denounce and condemn external meddling in domestic Iraqi affairs, particularly from Iran,â€ the tribal elders said in a statement faxed to the newspaper.
It said Iran had penetrated the southern and central parts of the country, working to divide Iraq into autonomous regions on sectarian lines.
The charges come amid U.S. and British accusations that Tehran had intensified its presence in southern Iraq.
The statement urged tribes across the country to deny â€œterrorists and saboteursâ€ any form of assistance and work for the unity and integrity of the country.