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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 May, 2003, 17:18 GMT 18:18 UK
In quotes: UN Iraq vote
The UN Security Council has overwhelmingly approved a resolution lifting economic sanctions against Iraq and giving its backing to the US-led administration.

Here is the selection of quotes from some of the members of the 15-seat Security Council.


French Ambassador to the UN Jean-Marc de la Sabliere:

The Iraqi people must now take control of (the country's) future, both domestically - where a representative and sovereign government is to be restored as soon as possible by the Iraqis themselves - and within the international community to which Iraq must soon return.


US Ambassador to the UN John Negroponte:

The lifting of sanctions marks a momentous event for the people of Iraq. It is time for the Iraqi people to benefit from their natural resources.


Russian Ambassador to the UN Sergei Lavrov:

It was a compromise.

The significance is primarily that (the resolution) creates an international legal basis for joint efforts to be made by the entire international community to deal with the crisis.


British Ambassador to the UN Jeremy Greenstock:

The whole United Nations system will hope that the vote which we have just taken marks a return to sustained consensus on one of the most difficult foreign policy issues we have faced. The United Kingdom will work to maintain that collective approach.

We've come to an end of a little era of the United Nations business with the passage of 1483... We've learned some lessons from this saga.


Chinese Ambassador to the UN Wang Yingfan:

Although some of our specific concerns have not been addressed, China has voted in favour. We hope that the United Nations can play its due role in the reconstruction of Iraq.


German Ambassador to the UN Gunter Pleuger:

This resolution is a compromise. It does not fulfil every wish of all parties, but as compared to the initial draft of the co-sponsors, we have achieved substantial improvements.


Cameroonian Ambassador to the UN Martin Belinga-Eboutou:

It is a great moment for our Council.

The resolution sends the message of confidence in the Iraqi people... a message of active solidarity on the part of the international community. Our collective responsibility is at stake here.


UN Secretary General Kofi Annan:

Whatever differences there has been in the recent past, we now have a new basis on which to work, and we must all work very hard, keeping the interest of Iraqis at the forefront of all our efforts.

Our most important task will be to ensure that the people of Iraq... are able as soon as possible, through a transparent, impartially managed political process, to form a free and representative government of their own choice.


Pakistani Ambassador to the UN Munir Akram:

Pakistan expects that the role of the United Nations and the Secretary General will become even more central in the coming months.


Angolan Ambassador to the UN Gaspar Martins:

This vote restores the principle of the multilateralism in the Council. The resolution safeguards the fundamental rights of the Iraqi people...


Guinean Ambassador to the UN Mamady Traore:

Guinea welcomes this resolution, which represents success for the United Nations in general, and the Security Council in particular.


Syrian Deputy Ambassador to the UN Fayssal Mekdad on why Syria was not present during the vote:

We requested a few minutes (from the Security Council) and these minutes were not given to us.

We wanted sanctions to be lifted long ago.




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