Security Council congratulates Iraqis on successful elections

31 March 2010

The Security Council today congratulated the people and Government of Iraq on a successful parliamentary election, and said it looked forward to the certification by the Supreme Court of the results announced last week.

In a press statement issued by Ambassador Emanuel Issoze-Ngondet of Gabon, which holds the rotating presidency for March, members of the Council called for the political entities “to respect the certified election results and the choices of the Iraqi people.

“The members of the Security Council also urge Iraq’s political leaders to avoid inflammatory rhetoric and actions.”

In addition to the Iraqi Government and people, the 15-member body also congratulated the Iraqi Security Forces and the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) for the successful holding of the 7 March polls, in which more than 6,000 candidates competed for 325 seats in the Council of Representatives.

Despite risks of violence and concerns that voters would be deterred from casting ballots, at least 12 million Iraqis turned out to vote.

The Council recognized the international assistance provided to the country, and commended the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), as well as Special Representative Ad Melkert, for providing technical assistance and support throughout the electoral process.

Mr. Melkert called the polls “credible” last week after the IHEC said there was no evidence of systematic or widespread fraud in the counting of ballots.

The party headed by Iyad Allawi, a former prime minister, won slightly more seats in the 325-member Council of Representatives than the party of current Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, according to media reports.

The members of the Security Council took note of the findings of international and independent Iraqi observers, “who affirmed their confidence in the overall integrity of the election.”

They also looked forward to the formation of the new government in a spirit of cooperation and respect for national unity.

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