UN to Coordinate International Efforts to Lend Aid to Iraq

The UN is preparing to coordinate international efforts to lend aid to the war-ridden Iraq, a Moscow-based United Nations information center announced on Tuesday.

In whatever does not concern humanitarian aid, the UN can participate only in the presence of a mandate issued by the Security Council, explained a source in the information center. In this connection, the UN leadership called on 15 members of the council to "overcome differences and work out an agreement." Besides, any role the UN might play must be provided with all necessary resources," stressed the source.

In the meantime, a spokesperson for the office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees told RIA Novosti, that apart from the aid the UN lends to Iraqi refugees, it will also be handling voluntary repatriation "as soon as conditions permit it." With this purpose, the UNHCR office has worked out a preliminary plan of repatriation and reintegration of about 500,000 Iraqi refugees.

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