Russian senator speaks for UN leading role in post-war Iraq

The UN "can and must play a crucial, vitally important role" in Iraq, chairman of the Federation Council's international committee Mikhail Margelov announced on Thursday.

"The starting point for joint action in Iraq should be a new resolution of the UN Security Council," he emphasised, when speaking in Strasbourg at the debates on the UN role in Iraq's restoration held within the autumn session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. Margelov is PACE deputy chairman and its main reporter for the Middle East.

The programme of political settlement in Iraq should be worked out by the UN Secretary General and approved by the Security Council, he pointed out. The UN jurisdiction should include all the issues of the constitutional reform, preparation and holding of elections, formation of the country's legitimate government.

The PACE deputy chairman pointed to the need "to clearly define the mandate of multinational forces" and "to set a clear prospect of restoring the country's sovereignty and further withdrawal of troops". It is also important to work out a plan of Iraq's restoration, Margelov added.

"The UN's historic mission is to be the guarantor of legitimacy, without which any projects of modernisation in Iraq will be foredoomed to failure," he emphasised.

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