Major tasks for new Iraqi Government
In an editorial last week (before the UN Security Council adopted its definitive resolution concerning the future of Iraq) Tareeq Al-Shaab, the newspaper of the Iraqi Communist Party, said that the discussion between the Iraqi Governing Council, the Coalition Provisional Authority and Mr Lakhdar Ibrahimi, the Special Adviser of the UN Secretary-General had acquired special significance. It had taken place under exceedingly complex and sensitive circumstances and during a transition period towards building the requirements and conditions for democracy in Iraq. The newspaper said that the institutions of the new government are expected to undertake the momentous task of regaining power on June 30 and leading the country over the next seven months. The first task is to create a suitable political, administrative and security atmosphere in which to hold direct general elections in the country and prepare the necessary prerequisites, including a census, electoral law, legislation for the press and political parties, etc. Preparations also have to be made to draft the country's constitution and organise a referendum on it. This will be followed by the first elections for an Iraqi National Assembly and the formation of a government. End occupation, regain sovereignty The people of Iraq, after years of persistence, suffering and struggle, are looking forward to June 30 as an historic turning point in their lives and an important signal for ending the occupation and regaining national sovereignty. The editorial said that June 30 will not be a "magical day" to end the legacy and effects of years of dictatorship and its wars, the strangulating sanctions, compounded by difficulties and hardship resulting from the occupation. However, it is crucial to reassure Iraqi citizens about the correctness of the path being pursued and the determination to address a wide range of social and economic problems and difficulties the people face every day. The first test for the newly formed government will be for it to represent, not a particular ethnicity, religious group, sect or political party, but all the Iraqis and their aspirations. It is essential that it re-examines the previous period which began on April 9, 2003 and seriously attend to weaknesses, deficiencies and improper practices. Iraq is home to all Iraqis, who are equal in rights and duties before the law says the editorial. And all Iraqis have an equal opportunity to compete for positions in any state institution, each according to her/his ability and level of competency. It becomes important to gain the people's confidence and mobilise them to defend their own rights. This will help to develop people's initiatives so that they can play an active role in achieving patriotic tasks to end the occupation, regain full sovereignty, rebuild the country's economy and establish a democratic Iraq. People's priorities are far too obvious: security and stability, tackling the problems of rampant unemployment by creating job opportunities, ensuring basic services, especially electricity now that summer is approaching. It is essential that every Iraqi citizen feels that real changes have occurred and correct steps have been taken, first and foremost to safeguard her/his interests and satisfy basic needs. The new government, as it assumes its duties, has big commitments to fulfill in order to ensure safe and secure passage over the next seven months. All citizens look forward to palpable achievements and successes that will place them on the road to building a new free, democratic and prosperous Iraq.