UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!

Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

UN extends mandate of multinational force in Iraq

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

New York, June 1, IRNA
UN Security Council has extended mandate of multinational force in Iraq.

The Security Council at the same time deplored 'campaign of violence against innocent civilians and Iraqi authorities' and called on member states to prevent movement of terrorists into Iraq as well as the flow of arms and money to sustain them.

The council extended the mandate after Iraq's Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari urged members to do so, saying Iraqi troops and police cannot yet defend the country against an armed insurgency by remnants of Saddam Hussein's regime and some foreigners.

"We in Iraq still face a destructive campaign of terror and violence that aims at derailing the political process and undoing the progress that has been achieved so far," Zebari said.

He said the elections for a transitional government on January 30 'sent a loud and clear message' that the Iraqi people 'will not be intimidated, nor will their future be dictated by terrorists and supporters of tyranny'.

Zebari urged Iraq's neighbors, especially Syria, to do more to prevent foreign extremists from crossing into Iraq, where their goal is to undermine the country's new democratic system.

Council diplomats said the statement's call on member states 'to assist in the security of Iraq's borders and prevent the transit of terrorists' was directed especially to Syria.

He urged Damascus to do more to police its borders.

"We'll do our best," Syria's UN Ambassador Fayssal Mekdad told reporters afterward. "We are ready to cooperate with the present, new Iraqi government to help wherever we can."
Mekdad said Syria negotiated a security protocol with Iraq's previous government but for 'unknown reasons' no Iraqi official has come to Damascus to sign it. Asked about the protocol, Zebari said in an interview that Iraq wants to see results at the border.

The Iraqi minister reaffirmed the transitional government's commitment to finish writing a new constitution by August 15, put it to a referendum in October, and then hold elections for a
constitutionally elected government in December.

The Security Council reaffirmed its support 'for a federal, democratic, pluralist and unified Iraq, in which there is full respect for human rights'.

A council resolution on June 8, 2004 authorized the force to stay in Iraq at the request of the interim government until a
constitutional government is elected, or until the Iraqi government asks that it be terminated.

Former interim prime minister, Ayad Allawi, asked the council to review the mandate in a year, or at the request of the transitional government formed in late April following the January 30 elections.

The multinational force has trained and equipped 165,000 Iraqi soldiers and police, but more needs to be done so Iraqi forces can take control of the country's security and gain the confidence of the Iraqi people.


Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list