H.E. Dr. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia
at the Security Council Debate under the Agenda Item:
“The Situation concerning Iraq”
New York, 6 August 2008
Let me begin by joining previous speakers in thanking the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Mr. Lynn Pascoe, for his briefing.
My delegation also thanks Ambassador Wolff of the United States for his statement on behalf of the Multi-National Force in Iraq and, of course, the Permanent Representative of Iraq for his important remarks.
The continued improvements in security across Iraq during the past three months have given the country and its people a chance to earn peace, stability and prosperity. My delegation recognizes the contribution of a combination of political and military efforts to this progress.
Despite the positive developments, security in Iraq remains fragile. A recent suicide bombing in Baghdad and Kirkuk that claimed a considerable number of civilian casualties leaves a reminder that investment in security is still of paramount importance.
We recognize the significance of military efforts by the Iraqi security forces in building peace and stability in Iraq. We welcome the fact that Iraqi security forces are gaining confidence and capability, the number of units capable of taking the lead in operations is increasing.
My delegation continues to underline the importance of the protection of civilians.
As indicated in the Secretary-General’s report, civilian casualties in Iraq have often been caused by the failure of all sides to the conflict to make the distinction between combatants and civilians as well as by disproportionate attacks on civilian areas. My delegation, therefore, reaffirms that all parties should respect international human rights and humanitarian law and continue to take necessary measures to ensure the protection of affected civilians.
We also share the concern of the Secretary-General over the psycho-social impact of violence and deprivation on millions of Iraqi children. We recognize the need for greater efforts and resources to address this challenge.
Military initiative alone cannot offer solution.
Achieving sustainable peace in Iraq will also require meaningful and inclusive political dialogue and reconciliation across various divides. Significant support from all segments of the Iraqi population is critical to the achievement of long-term stability in the country.
My delegation, therefore, believes that it is important for the people of Iraq to resort to peaceful means in dispute settlement, and engage in political dialogue and reconciliation. The Helsinki reconciliation meeting on 29 April 2008 that involved 30 representatives from Iraq’s main political and ethnic groups is a welcome step.
My delegation also recognizes the importance of political progress that Iraq has achieved, to the stability of the country.
We welcome some recent positive steps aimed to strengthen unity within the Iraqi Government.
The upcoming provincial elections will be an important stage in the democratic process in Iraq. We welcome the role of the Independent High Electoral Commission of Iraq in that regard.
We also recognize the challenges that Iraq continues to face in the early passage of electoral law and in the constitutional review process. We welcome the commitment of the Government of Iraq to making progress in those efforts.
The enlarging relationship between Iraq and its neighbouring countries nowadays is a laudable development.
We welcome the convening of the Third Expanded Ministerial Conference of Neighbouring Countries of Iraq in Kuwait on 22 April 2008 as well as the first Iraq Compact Annual Review Conference in Stockholm on 29 May 2008.
We continue to attach primary importance to the International Compact with Iraq, serving as a new partnership between Iraq and the international community in order to achieve peace consolidation and comprehensive development.
With regard to UNAMI, its continued presence and contribution in Iraq will remain pertinent and essential considering the ongoing efforts by the Government and people of Iraq in economic development, embracing democracy, good governance and rule of law, and promoting peace and stability.
UNAMI’s role in supporting the International Compact for Iraq Secretariat in Baghdad and in the review of its management to increase effectiveness is commendable. Its assistance to the electoral processes at the governorate level, its support for reconciliation efforts, and its contribution in establishing a process for addressing disputed internal boundaries are also laudable.
We recognize the request of the Government of Iraq for the continuation of UNAMI and its work in Iraq. Mindful also of the important contribution of UNAMI in building a peaceful, stable, and prosperous Iraq, my delegation welcomes such a request.
Finally, my delegation wishes to reaffirm our support for the independence, sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity of Iraq, and the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of Iraq.
I thank you, Mr. President.
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