NZ should take the lead in UN initiative

The Green Party is urging the Government to push strongly for the United Nations, not the United States, to take charge of Iraqi reconstruction.

“The credibility of this United States administration has been irredeemably tarnished by its unlawful invasion of Iraq,” Green Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Keith Locke said today. “Now, for the sake of the long-suffering people of Iraq, it should pack up its tanks and hand-over interim responsibility for the restoration of democracy to the United Nations.

“Our Government can play a major role in getting the UN involved again in Iraq. Not only can we lobby members of that organisation but we can lead the way by offering our expertise in post-war reconstruction.

“Already the Bush administration is divvying up Iraq construction contracts among its cronies, and negotiating with oil companies for rights over resources that belong only to the people of Iraq.

“It is now up to those nations that have not bloodied their hands in this immoral war to help restore a shattered nation,” said Keith Locke. “This Government, to its credit, has kept its hands clean — it’s now time to use those hands to help rebuild Iraq.”