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UN against 'Mickey Mouse' polls in Iraq
May 04, 2004 09:14 IST
Preparations for Iraq's national assembly election in January 2005 are "on track", but a free and fair poll is not possible unless security improves, according to a United Nations official.
"The United Nations would not participate in Mickey Mouse elections. The elections have to be seen by the Iraqis as fair. Violence during the process has to be minimised and candidates should not be intimidated," Director of the UN Electoral Assistance Division Carina Perelli said in New York on Monday.
Elections should not be seen as "silver bullets that cure all ills", but they are an essential step on the path to a peaceful and stable Iraq, she said.
"Therefore, the United Nations is playing an active role in ensuring that free and fair elections, called for by the Transitional Administrative Law, would take place no later than 31 January," said Perelli, who had just headed a three-week mission to Iraq to discuss the holding of elections with various parties.