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UN Envoy Urges Iraqi Vote Free from Fear

With Iraqi Referendum Just Days Away, UN Envoy Urges Vote Free from Fear

New York, Oct 12 2005 3:00PM

With Iraq's constitutional referendum just three days away, the top United Nations envoy in the country has stressed the importance of the vote taking place in an atmosphere free from fear and intimidation.

Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Representative Ashraf Qazi met yesterday with Iraqi Prime Minster Ibrahim Al-Jafari to discuss the latest political and constitutional developments, as well as the role of the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI).

"The Iraqi Prime Minister reiterated his appreciation for United Nations' presence in Iraq at a critical moment, and for the work it was doing," UNAMI said in a statement today. "He urged the UN to continue playing its role in promoting peace and conflict resolution."

On the referendum, Mr. Qazi "expressed the importance of ensuring an atmosphere in which the people of Iraq could exercise their choice free from fear and intimidation," the statement added.

Mr. Qazi also discussed the status issue of Arab Nationals, particularly those of Palestinian refugees living in Iraq, as well as some of the difficulties they face.


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