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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

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New York, 3 January 2012 - Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on Iraq

Iraq this year begins a promising new chapter in its history. The Secretary-General believes that this is an opportunity for Iraq to further strengthen its democratically-elected institutions and to promote peace and stability for the benefit of the Iraqi people.

At the same time, the Secretary-General wishes to express his concern about recent political tensions that could contribute to further insecurity in the country. He therefore strongly supports calls for political dialogue to address outstanding issues in a spirit of partnership and national unity. The Secretary-General urges all parties to work to resolve their differences peacefully through meaningful dialogue and compromise. It is essential that pending political issues are resolved in a way that respects the constitution and its provisions for the separation of powers, the rule of law and an independent judiciary.

In accordance with its mandate, the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), under the leadership of Special Representative Martin Kobler, will continue to consult Iraqi leaders and is ready to provide any assistance they require at this critical juncture.

Statements on 3 January 2012