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UN Security Council approves resolution on expanded UN role in Iraq
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08:33, August 11, 2007

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The UN Security Council voted unanimously on Friday to approve a resolution to expand the role of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) in the country''s post-war reconstruction process.

The resolution, drafted by the United States and Britain, extends the mandate of the four-year-old UNAMI, whose current mandate expires on Friday, for another year.

It also requires the UN chief''s special envoy and UNAMI to " advise, support and assist" Iraqis on "advancing their inclusive, political dialogue and national reconciliation."

The UN mission will also be tasked to help Iraqis hold elections, review their constitution, resolve disputed internal boundaries and plan a comprehensive census.

UNAMI will help facilitate "regional dialogue, including issues of border security, energy and refugees," and assist reintegration programs for former combatants.

The new mandate also authorizes the mission to help with the return of refugees, coordinate reconstruction and aid efforts, help promote economic reform and promote the protection of human rights and legal reform.

The resolution also recognizes the "important role" of the U.S.- led multinational force in "supporting UNAMI, including security and logistical support."

It further recognizes that "security is essential for UNAMI to carry out its work on behalf of the people of Iraq."

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the council''s decision and pledged the world body''s commitment to helping the Iraqi people "in crucial areas such as national reconciliation, regional dialogue, humanitarian assistance and human rights."

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