UN Radio: Security Council Lifts Iraq Sanctions
Security Council Adopts US-UK Resolution - Annan Pledges Full UN Support for Iraq - Humanitarian Situation in Iraq is Very Serious - Sympathy for Victims of Algeria's Earthquake - Fighting is Reported in Ituri, D R Congo…
UN Security Council Adopts a Resolution on Interim Arrangements in Iraq
The Security Council today adopted a resolution giving United Nations backing to the United States-led administration of Iraq and to lifting economic sanctions. The resolution was adopted by fourteen votes, with Syria absent.
It provides for a role for a United Nations representative working with the provisional authority. It clears the way for Iraqi oil exports to resume in order to restore economic activity for the reconstruction of the country. Ambassador John Negroponte of the United States said the resolution establishes transparency in all processes and United Nations participation in monitoring the sale of Iraqi oil resources and expenditures of proceeds from such sale:
"I am pleased to announce the creation of the Development Fund for Iraq in the Central Bank of Iraq. As the resolution underlines, the authority will disperse the funds only for the purposes it determines to benefit the Iraqi people."
The Security Council will review the implementation of the resolution in 12 months and consider further steps it may need to take.
Annan Pledges Full UN Support for Iraq
The United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, has pledged the United Nations full support of international effort to help Iraq. Speaking in the Security Council after the adoption of the resolution on Iraq, he reiterated that the unity of the Council is the indispensable foundation for the maintenance of international peace and security as well as international law:
"Whatever differences there have been in the recent past, we now have a new basis on which to work. And we must all work very hard, keeping the interests of Iraqis at the forefront of all our efforts."
The Secretary-General told the Security Council that he will soon name a Special Representative for Iraq.
Humanitarian Situation in Iraq is Very Serious: Deputy Secretary-General
The Security Council today held an open meeting on the humanitarian situation in Iraq. The meeting was attended by representatives of the UN Development Programme, the UN Children's Fund, the World Health Organization, the World Food Programme and the International Committee of the Red Cross. Opening the meeting, the UN Deputy Secretary-General, Louise Frechette, said the humanitarian situation in Iraq remains very serious. She said the breakdown of essential services and law and order has resulted in a range of urgent needs:
"A major humanitarian crisis has been averted so far. But the civilian population, and children in particular, remain at risk, particularly if the security situation does not improve substantially in the near future."
Ms. Frechette paid tribute to the Iraqi national staff who continued to provide relief assistance during the conflict.
The Security Council Expresses Sympathy for Victims of Algeria's Earthquake
The Security Council today expressed sympathy to the victims of the earthquake that has struck Algeria. More than 600 people are reported to have been killed and over 4,000 injured in the country's worst earthquake in two decades. The President of the Security Council for this month is Ambassador Munir Akram of Pakistan:
"I should like, on behalf of the Security Council, to extend our heartfelt sympathy to the government and people of Algeria in connection with the earthquake, which occurred in the vicinity of Thenia, resulting in considerable devastation and loss of life."
In addition, the UN Secretary-General said he was deeply saddened by the heavy loss of life, injuries and destruction caused by the earthquake in Algeria.
Fighting is Reported in Ituri, D R Congo
Fighting has been reported in northern Ituri in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In Bunia, Hema militias remain in control of the town while Lendu militias remain on the southern outskirts. A United Nations spokesman said that the UN mission in the country is meeting the chiefs of staff of the militias on a regular basis. The United Nations continues to patrol Bunia and is also investigating reports that anti-personnel mines have been laid in the town. Over 300 bodies have been discovered so far. They include some 32 bodies in a water tank near the old governor's residence.