UN needs expanded mandate for role in Iraq

June 18th, 2009 - 11:52 pm ICT by IANS  

New York, June 18 (DPA) The UN Security Council was asked Thursday to provide an expanded mandate for its mission in Iraq, which reported that Baghdad has consistently built credible and independent institutions despite the ongoing violence.
Steffan de Mistura, the UN special envoy for Iraq, urged the 15-nation council to expand the mandate of the UN Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) and increase the presence of the UN staff.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was called upon to provide clear direction that will be “proactive and results-oriented,” de Mistura said during a council’s review debate on the situation in Iraq.

De Mistura said the UN could make a difference and be allowed to act as “honest brokers” in Iraq.

“We sought to be selective and incremental in identifying ‘quick wins’ to build our credibility by trying to demonstrate that we can deliver, by proving that we can be creative and reliable in the use of our main asset - international legitimacy,” he said.

“The Iraqi people have shown remarkable resilience and are now more than ever able to determine the course of events in their own country,” he said.

UNAMI’s current staff includes 300 internationals and about a similar number of locals. Its mandate has been mostly to assist the government in Baghdad in its reconstruction and recovery efforts.

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