Tag: Abagail

In his latest report on the work of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), Mr. Ban writes that while an increase in violence was anticipated during the redeployment of the United States military from cities on 30 June, a “relative calm” was achieved and the Iraqi security forces have succeeded in assuming security responsibilities in critical parts of the country.“I am hopeful that this is a trend that bodes well for the future of Iraq,” he states. At the same time, the Secretary-General says that he is concerned about the relationship between the Federal Government in Baghdad and the leadership of the Iraqi Kurdistan region. He urges the Kurdistan Regional Government and the Iraqi Kurdistan Parliament to reconsider the provisions in the draft Kurdistan regional constitution, which could have the potential to aggravate tensions and affect ongoing discussions on the disputed boundaries.Mr. Ban also calls for an end to provocative statements, including those which pre-judge in any way the future of areas such as Kirkuk, and to any unilateral actions on the ground which the other side is likely to see as hostile in intent.“The process for discussing disputed internal boundaries is in the early stages, but I expect and hope that the political will displayed by both sides will remain and that all parties will continue to work together to positively affect the situation on the ground and ensure that progress through dialogue continues,” he writes.Meanwhile, Mr. Ban says it is encouraging that in the lead-up to the national election, Iraq national institutions – especially the Electoral Commission – have developed their own expertise in carrying out election activities. “As we move closer to the parliamentary elections, the challenge will be to maintain the transparency and independence of the Electoral Commission while establishing a strong platform from which to ensure that there is acceptance of the election results.”The national voter registration exercise will be a critical element in the successful implementation of the January parliamentary elections as well as possible district and sub-district elections later in 2010, he adds. In addition, he urged the Iraqi Council of Representatives to proceed with the adoption of an inclusive electoral law without delay so as not to jeopardize the delivery of the elections. “Now is the time for political leaders to demonstrate statesmanship, rising beyond their differences and narrow interests, and prove to the Iraqi people that sovereignty comes with responsibility and accountability in visible progress towards a return to normalcy in the daily lives of Iraqis and the functioning of a viable State,” he says. It is also “potentially a time of opportunity” regarding the Iraq’s recovery and development, he notes, citing momentum across the Government to tackle some of the country’s most entrenched socio-economic issues: unemployment, dilapidated infrastructure, corruption and poverty.Mr. Ban adds that economic revival must also be strategically geared towards addressing inequalities through greater investment in social services, social protection and the realization of fundamental human rights for every Iraqi. 3 August 2009Iraq is entering a crucial transition period, highlighted by its increased responsibility for its security and the national elections planned for next January, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says. read more