EU Wants Key Role for UN in Post-war Iraq

Politics | April 17, 2003, Thursday // 00:00

The European Union is calling for the United Nations to play a "central role" in the reconstruction of Iraq, a draft statement says, conceding that coalition forces have the initial task of making the country secure.

The statement was issued on Thursday on the second day of an EU summit in the Greek capital, Athens, a meeting that has been discussing the future of Iraq.

The UN must play a central role, including in the process leading towards self-government for the Iraqi people, utilising its unique capacity and experience in post-conflict nation building, the statement reads.

It added: "At this stage, the coalition has the responsibility to ensure a secure environment, including for the provision of humanitarian assistance and the protection of the cultural heritage and museums."

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