UNITED NATIONS (AP) – The Security Council unanimously adopted a
resolution yesterday aimed at attracting more troops and money to
help stabilize Iraq and speed its independence – a diplomatic
victory for Washington after the bitter dispute over the war.

The resolution’s success hinges on whether it generates
additional funds for Iraq’s reconstruction at next week’s donors
conference in Madrid, Spain, and whether countries decide to send
new forces to Iraq.

In a dramatic shift, France, Germany and Russia – key opponents
of the U.S.-led war against Iraq – supported the resolution. But
they immediately ruled out any new military or financial help,
reflecting ongoing concern about the speed with which Washington
would transfer authority to Iraqis.

The resolution gives U.N. authorization to a multinational force
under unified command that will be led by the United States and
calls for troop contributions as well as “substantial pledges” from
the 191 U.N. member states at the Madrid donors conference on Oct.
23.

The 15-0 vote was a coup for Secretary of State Colin Powell,
who called the outcome “a great achievement” – although he
cautioned that the resolution should not be seen as “opening the
door to troops.”

Powell led six weeks of intense U.S. lobbying and worked the
phones from the early hours Wednesday. When he launched his final
diplomatic blitz, U.S. officials were concerned the resolution
might get only the minimum nine “yes” votes needed for
adoption.

A day earlier, France, Russia and Germany failed to persuade the
United States to include in the resolution a timetable for
restoring Iraq’s sovereignty. Instead, the draft calls for the
U.S.-appointed Iraqi Governing Council – in cooperating with the
coalition and a U.N. representative – to provide the Security
Council by Dec. 15 with a timetable for drafting a new constitution
and holding elections.

The resolution makes clear that the U.S.-led occupation of Iraq
is temporary and states that “the day when Iraqis govern themselves
must come quickly.” It urges the U.S.-led Coalition Provisional
Authority now running the country to let Iraqis govern the country
“as soon as practicable.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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