EU calls for power transfer to Iraqis
17 November 2003 , BRUSSELS - European Union foreign ministers Monday urged the US Administration to press ahead with its new plans for a rapid transfer of political power to Iraqi authorities.
17 November 2003
BRUSSELS - European Union foreign ministers Monday urged the US Administration to press ahead with its new plans for a rapid transfer of political power to Iraqi authorities.
EU ministers said they recognised the "need to continue and take forward the welcome process of handing over executive powers to the Iraqi Governing Council and its ministries."
A statement by the 15-nation bloc voiced "satisfaction" at the Iraqi governing council's weekend announcement of a new political programme to speed up the transfer of sovereignty to an Iraqi provisional government.
In keeping with new US policy, the council effectively reversed the seven-month political process under which sovereignty would only be granted following the drawing up of a constitution and Iraqi elections.
EU governments led by France and Germany have long emphasised the importance of a swift handover of sovereignty to Iraqi authorities, saying this would help stem the increasing number of attacks on US-led coalition forces in Iraq.
EU ministers condemned terrorist attacks in Iraq and said the EU was determined to contribute to the political and economic reconstruction of Iraq.
But they warned that "security remains a major priority in Iraq."
Subject: German news