15 February 2005

Secretary-General Congratulates People of Iraq Following Election Results, Promises UN’s Deep Commitment So Next Stage in Transition

NEW YORK, 14 February (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General welcomes the announcement yesterday by the Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq (IECI) of the results of the elections of 30 January 2005. They reflect not only the courage and determination of the Iraqi people, but also their commitment to the political transition process that their country is undergoing. On this auspicious day, the Secretary-General congratulates the people of Iraq.

With the successful completion of this important stage in the transition, the Secretary-General calls upon all Iraqis to come together in a spirit of national reconciliation to move their country forward towards a peaceful, prosperous and democratic future. The Secretary-General hopes that every effort will be made to ensure that all Iraqis, including those -- mainly Sunni Arabs -- who did not or could not take part in the elections, have the opportunity, and are encouraged, to participate fully in an inclusive, participatory and transparent political process, leading to the adoption of a national constitution with the broadest possible support.

The United Nations is deeply committed to playing a full part in the next stage in the transition, as well as to helping with the subsequent referendum and general election. The United Nations will spare no efforts to meet the expectations of the Iraqi people through this critical period of their country’s history.

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