Press Releases

    12 August 2005

    Security Council Extends UN Iraq Mission for 12 Months, Unanimously Adopting Resolution 1619 (2005)

    NEW YORK, 11 August (UN Headquarters) -- The Security Council this morning, reaffirming that the United Nations should play a leading role in assisting Iraq in the formation of institutions for representative government, extended the United Nations Mission in that country for another 12 months, with the intention of reviewing its mandate at the end of that period, or sooner, if so requested by the Government of Iraq.

    Unanimously adopting resolution 1619 (2005) on the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), the Council acted on the recommendations of the Secretary-General, contained in his 3 August letter to the President of the Council (document S/2005/509).

    In that letter, the Secretary-General, who was present at the meeting today -- noted that the Mission had grown in size and expanded its activities, despite severe operational and security constraints.  At present, there are some 260 United Nations civilian and military personnel based in Iraq, and that number is expected to rise further with the operational use of new facilities in Erbil and Basra and increased reconstruction, development and humanitarian activities in those areas.

    UNAMI was initially established by resolution 1500 of 14 August 2003 for a one-year period, but the deadly attack on United Nations Headquarters in Baghdad on 19 August 2003 greatly reduced its capacity to act inside Iraq.  After that, the Mission operated primarily from other locations in the region and only resumed operations in the territory of Iraq in August 2004.

    According to the Secretary-General's letter, through UNAMI, the Organization stands ready to continue to assist the Government and the people of Iraq.  UNAMI electoral and constitutional support will remain available beyond the scheduled completion of the proposed transitional timetable outlined in resolution 1546 (2004), if so requested by the Iraqi Government.  The Mission is also ready to continue to assist in the fields of reconstruction, development and humanitarian assistance, as long as may be deemed necessary by the country's Government.

    The meeting was called to order at 10.23 a.m. and adjourned at 10.26 a.m.

    The full text of resolution 1619 (2005) reads as follows:

    "The Security Council,

    "Recalling all its previous relevant resolutions on Iraq, in particular 1500 (2003) of 14 August 2003, 1546 (2004) of 8 June 2004, and 1557 (2004) of 12 August 2004,

    "Reaffirming the independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Iraq,

    "Recalling the establishment of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) on 14 August 2003, and extended on 12 August 2004, and reaffirming that the United Nations should play a leading role in assisting the efforts of the Iraqi people and Government in developing institutions for representative government, and in promoting national dialogue and unity,

    "Stressing that this Iraqi national dialogue, which UNAMI should assist, is crucial for Iraq's political stability and unity,

    "Taking note of the letter dated 3 August 2005 from the Secretary-General addressed to the President of the Security Council (S/2005/509),

    "1. Decides to extend the mandate of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) for another period of twelve months from the date of this resolution;

    "2. Expresses its intention to review the mandate of UNAMI in twelve months or sooner, if requested by the Government of Iraq;

    "3. Decides to remain seized of the matter."

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