17 March 2005

Secretary-General Welcomes Convening of Transitional General Assembly of Iraq

NEW YORK, 16 March (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General welcomes the convening today in Baghdad of the Transitional National Assembly of Iraq (TNA).  This marks an important step in Iraq’s political transition process.  Now that the TNA has been convened, the Secretary-General hopes that the Transitional Government of Iraq will be formed quickly so that Iraq can move forward to the next phase of its political transition, particularly the drafting of a national constitution by the people of Iraq.

As stated by his Special Representative, Ashraf Qazi, in his address to the Assembly upon its inauguration, the Secretary-General wishes to assure the Iraqi people and their elected representatives that the United Nations will continue to support their efforts in the political and economic reconstruction of their country, including by providing any needed assistance to Iraq’s sovereign and independent constitution-making process.  To that end, his Special Representative will continue to consult with the newly elected members of the TNA and other Iraqi representatives, with a view to promoting dialogue and national reconciliation.

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