France calls for international conference on Iraq

26th September 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Sept 25 (AFP) - France wants an international conference to be held on Iraq to avoid a "partition" of the country, foreign minister Philippe Douste-Blazy said Sunday.

PARIS, Sept 25 (AFP) - France wants an international conference to be held on Iraq to avoid a "partition" of the country, foreign minister Philippe Douste-Blazy said Sunday.

"I hope there will be an international conference on Iraq with all the political parties in Iraq, to be able to think of tomorrow so that Iraq remains one country and there will not be any partition by one side or the other," Douste-Blazy said.

"What's at stake is the partition or not of the country," Douste-Blazy said on Radio J, a Jewish radio station in Paris, without providing any further details about such a conference.

"The idea of (US) President (George W) Bush is to say that 'we are going to transform this country into one that is at peace and democratic,'" Douste-Blazy said. "Today we see a country which is subjected to internal conflict and violence with deaths every day, and the question is to know if national cohesion is going to remain intact."

"We see on the one hand a constitutional process advancing in Iraq, but without certain political groups," the foreign minister said, referring to the constitutional referendum, to elections and the formation of a new government which is planned to be put in place before the end of the year.

There must be "political solutions and not only purely security solutions, because the future of Iraq lies not in the hands of the security forces but of the political parties," Douste-Blazy said.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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