NEW YORK–(ENEWSPF)–1 June 2010 – The top United Nations official in Iraq today welcomed the decision by the country’s highest court certifying the results of the parliamentary elections held nearly three months ago, and called on leaders to complete the formation of the new government at the earliest.
In a statement issued in Baghdad, Ad Melkert described the announcement by the Federal Supreme Court as a crucial step towards the formation of a government that will shape the country’s future for the next four years.
The court upheld the results announced by Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC), in which the party headed by Iyad Allawi, a former prime minister, received more votes than the coalition led by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki in the 325-member Council of Representatives.
At least 12 million people cast their votes in the 7 March polls, in which more than 6,000 candidates took part.
Mr. Melkert, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), encouraged the country’s leaders to “move swiftly and work together to complete the formation of the new government through an inclusive process.”
It is vital that the new Council of Representatives convenes as soon as possible as stipulated in Iraq’s constitution, he added.
Last week Mr. Melkert told the Security Council that a broad-based coalition government in Iraq is a better alternative for the people of that country who are eager to see a stable administration.
“At this juncture, Iraq would probably be better served by a broadly inclusive government as a radical alternative to exclusion and disenfranchisement that many communities have experienced in the past,” he stated.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in his latest report on UNAMI, noted that, once established, the new government will face a host of challenges, ranging from national reconciliation and the sharing of natural resources to human rights and reconstruction.
“The challenge is to consolidate the gains that have been made in recent years and not allow armed groups and other spoilers to exploit the situation,” he wrote in the report, which was released last month.