UNAMI reports on Iraqi border disputes

June 5, 2008 at 10:44 PM
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BAGHDAD, June 5 (UPI) -- The U.N. mission in Iraq Thursday presented an analysis to the Iraqi government concerning possible resolutions to internal border disputes.

The U.N. Assistance Mission in Iraq examined four districts in Iraq to develop benchmarks for the Iraqi government to reach broader national reconciliation as part of the Iraqi Constitution. Article 140 of the Iraqi Constitution seeks to reverse ethnic policies implemented by Saddam Hussein.

UNAMI examined the city of Akre in Ninewa province. It is administered by the provincial government of Dohuk because it lies between Kurdish and Baghdad authority. UNAMI recommended freedom of movement between both provinces and fair hiring practices for government and civil service positions.

In Hamdaniya, also in Ninewa, UNAMI suggested incorporating Arabic and Christian members into official duties as a confidence-building measure to settle displacement issues among those groups.

The city of Makhmour is administered by the provincial government of Ninewa despite its location within the province of Erbil. UNAMI recommended restoring Makhmour to Erbil.

The city of Mandali in Diyala province experienced widespread displacement of Kurds and Turkomen during the Iran-Iraq war. UNAMI recommends implementing local processes to address reconstruction issues involving all members of that city.

UNAMI said it started analysis on scenarios to settle the status of the province of Kirkuk and intends to present those findings in the next few weeks.

"I want to stress that the government of Iraq alone has the sovereign responsibility to decide on the process and methodology used to address disputed internal boundaries," said the U.N. envoy to Iraq, Staffan de Mistura.

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