28 September 2005

Secretary-General Welcomes Announcement on Decommissioning of IRA Weapons

NEW YORK, 27 September (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement is attributable to the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General welcomes the news that a major obstacle to the search for a lasting and sustainable political settlement in Northern Ireland has been removed, with the announcement by the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning that the Irish Republican Army (IRA) has completed the decommissioning of its weapons. This development is a critical step in the IRA's fulfilment of the commitment it gave on 28 July to pursue its goals henceforth through exclusively peaceful and democratic means.

The Secretary-General calls on all parties to seize this unique opportunity to consolidate the Good Friday Agreement.

* *** *