UN chief hails Iraq's approval of election law

14:12, November 09, 2009      

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UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sunday welcomed the Iraqi parliament's approval of a crucial election law, saying that "the decision now paves the way for preparations for national elections to be held in January."

A statement, issued here by Ban's spokesperson, said, "The secretary-general welcomes the agreement reached today in the Council of Representatives on amendments to the electoral law in Iraq. This decision now paves the way for preparations for national elections to be held in January."

The Iraqi lawmakers on Sunday approved by majority a long-awaited election law which would govern the country's national polls scheduled for January. The law won 141 votes out of 195 lawmakers who attended the televised session of the 275-seat parliament.

There have been concerns that such a postponement could undo recent progress towards greater stability, reports said.

"These elections will be a crucial opportunity to advance national reconciliation and contribute to Iraq's political progress," the statement said. "The secretary-general appeals to all political blocs and their leaders to demonstrate true statesmanship during the election campaign and participate in a spirit of national unity."

"The secretary-general reaffirms the United Nations commitment to support and assist the Independent High Electoral Commission during the electoral process, and encourages the Iraqi people and all political parties to participate in a process that will shape their country's future," the statement added.

Source: Xinhua
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