26 October 2005
Secretary-General Commends Iraqis on Approval of Constitution, Hopes Historic Event Will Mark Milestone on Iraq's Path to Democracy
NEW YORK, 25 October (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan:
The Secretary-General is pleased that the Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq released the preliminary results of the referendum on the draft constitution this morning. He commends the Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq for having organized the referendum under very difficult circumstances.
The Iraqi people have made their decision and have approved the draft constitution. The Secretary-General commends the Iraqi people for this historic event, which he hopes will mark a milestone on Iraq's path to democracy. The high levels of voter turnout throughout the country and amongst all the main political constituencies are particularly encouraging. That so many voters turned out to vote despite the threats against them is a welcome sign of their desire to choose ballots rather than bullets to express their political views.
With the adoption of the constitution, Iraq can now move forward to the next step in its political transition process, the holding of national elections on 15 December. The Secretary-General calls on all Iraqis to participate with the same commitment in the upcoming election campaign, which will determine the composition of Iraq's new parliament.
The Secretary-General hopes that the adoption of Iraq's constitution will encourage all Iraqis to reach out to one another in a spirit of national reconciliation through a fully inclusive political process to build a democratic and united Iraq. The United Nations will continue to make every effort to support the efforts of the Iraqi people and Government to that end.
* *** *