France insists Iraqis needprospects for full sovereignty

29th June 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 29 (AFP) - France on Wednesday insisted that the Iraqi people needed to have "clear prospects for full sovereignty", after US President George W. Bush rejected calls to withdraw US troops from Iraq by a fixed date.

PARIS, June 29 (AFP) - France on Wednesday insisted that the Iraqi people needed to have "clear prospects for full sovereignty", after US President George W. Bush rejected calls to withdraw US troops from Iraq by a fixed date.

"France, with the international community, committed within the framework of (UN) Resolution 1546 to a course and a timetable for the restoration of Iraqi sovereignty," said foreign ministry spokesman Jean-Baptiste Mattei.

"One of the dimensions upon which France has insisted in recent months is the need for the Iraqis to have a view toward, to have clear prospects for full sovereignty, including in the areas of defence and security," Mattei said.

In a nationally televised address late Tuesday, Bush said the key to a swift US pullout from Iraq was the training of the violence-wracked country's fledgling security forces.

But the US president said setting a timetable for the withdrawal of some 135,000 US troops from Iraq "would be a serious mistake".

The French spokesman said: "In order to reinforce the democratic transition, the political and economic reconstruction of Iraq must be supported. This is the message that the minister will convey to the American authorities during his trip to the United States."

French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy will travel to Washington on July 5 for talks with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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