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UN political affairs chief meets top officials in Iraq

14 June 2011 – The top United Nations political affairs official has concluded a three-day visit to Iraq during which he held discussions with senior Iraqi leaders in the capital Baghdad and the cities of Kirkuk and Erbil, as well as with officials from the UN political mission in the country.

B. Lynn Pascoe, Under-Secretary General for Political Affairs, emphasized the readiness of the UN to continue assisting Iraq to build a stable and prosperous democracy for its people during his meetings with various officials, including Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, a UN spokesperson said today.

Mr. Pascoe expressed the UN’s willingness in particular to provide further help to Iraqi stakeholders in identifying mutually agreeable solutions to pending issues related to the Internally Disputed Boundaries areas.

The UN has previously facilitated talks involving the national Government and the Kurdistan Regional Government on the dispute over boundaries within northern Iraq, which is oil-rich and ethnically mixed.

Mr. Pascoe praised the courage of the Iraqi people and commended UN staff in Iraq, including the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) and the UN Country Team, for their valuable work in difficult circumstances.

UN assistance in the field of human rights and in helping the country meet its humanitarian and development challenges also came up for discussion during the meetings.

“Iraq remains a very high priority on the UN agenda and we will do everything we can to assist this country and its people in securing a better, safer and more prosperous future for all of its people,” said Mr. Pascoe.

“I commend and salute the Iraqi people for their courage and steadfastness in the face of all attempts to derail Iraq’s progress towards a stable democracy that meets the people’s expectations,” he added.



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