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UN Hails Iraqi Vote As 'Immense Success'

With Final Elections Results Announced, UN Hails Iraqi Vote As 'Immense Success'

With today's announcement of final election results, the Iraqi people have shown the world that they were really up to the occasion and that made this process an immense success, the chief United Nations election expert in the country said.

"We congratulate them for it," Carlos Valenzuela told a news conference after the Independent Electoral Commission for Iraq (IECI) announced the final stage of an electoral process in which the UN played an advisory and technical role.

The announcement came a day after the Security Council called for inclusiveness and transparency in the next stages of the war-torn country's transition, including the writing of a new constitution, after large numbers of Sunni Arabs, who form about 20 per cent of the population, stayed away from the 30 January poll and thus will be largely unrepresented in the just-elected transitional National Assembly.

The Council pledged full UN support for a federal, democratic, pluralist and unified Iraq as the new legislators face the challenges of writing the constitution and holding new elections for a permanent assembly and government by the end of the year.

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