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USUN Press Release

New York, New York
June 12, 2007


Remarks by Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, U.S. Permanent Representative, on Sudan and Iraq

Reporter: Tell us a little bit of what you've just heard in there about the extent of Sudanese violations of the sanctions so far.

Ambassador Khalilzad: Well, there was some reports that the chairman of the [Sudan Sanctions] Committee related to the Council from the panel of experts with regard to aircraft, military aircraft being deployed to Darfur in violation of council decisions and also the marking of, U.N. marking on one of the aircraft. And the point also was made with regard to the agreement between AU and U.N. and what might or might not have happened today in Addis Ababa. Well, several of us made the point that if this is an unconditional acceptance, this would be a positive step that we would welcome, but, if it's conditional, as we hear, that there will be only African troops involved and no non-Africans, that's putting a condition on the acceptance and that would be unacceptable. So we had a good exchange of views.

Reporter: The communique, which I just read here, doesn't contain any particular condition. You're hearing from, where are you sort of hearing it from, that is indeed a condition the…

Ambassador Khalilzad: Well, that's why you have to be very careful. You guys ask questions right away, so, and it's the fog of war, something has happened, you get different reports, press reports. It's best to wait and see exactly what they have said yes to and whether they have put conditions or not. That's why I was careful about saying if the acceptance is unconditional, and we have to seethe authoritative decision, response of the government of Sudan. An unconditional acceptance is welcomed, but if it is conditional, then we would take a different…

Reporter: What does all this do, what you heard in there plus this agreement, whatever it is, to the deliberations that have been going on for some weeks here in New York about tighter sanctions on Sudan?

Ambassador Khalilzad: Well, that's very much still under consideration. We have said that if we don't get an unconditional acceptance of the EU-U.N. concept on the hybrid force, then several of us are of the view that we have to go with additional sanctions, tightening sanctions to incentivize the government to cooperate. But it's also important to note that we understand that the violence is not only from the government, from militias associated with government, but also from the rebels. And so therefore, we believe all sides have a responsibility to cooperate with U.N. Security Council resolutions, to cooperate on the humanitarian assistance and to cooperate on the peacekeeping part, the heavy and hybrid force. It's a comprehensive approach that we are advocates of. Thank you.

Reporter: Mr. Ambassador, Iraq's foreign minister is here. Do you foresee any direct U.N. involvement in Iraq, and are you going to meet with him today?

Ambassador Khalilzad: I'm meeting with him later this evening, and I look forward to catching up with him regarding Iraq. But on the U.N., you've heard me say the U.N. already has a role, of course. There is an UNAMI presence there. What we're going to discuss is how to enhance that role.

Reporter: How do you respond to the comment that you can't increase the U.N.'s role as long as the MNF is in the region because it sees it as a violator of international law?

Ambassador Khalilzad: The MNF is there under U.N. mandate, at the request of the Iraqi government. And the two can be very compatible. Thank you.

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Released on June 13, 2007

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