UN / IRAQ ELECTIONS

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25-Aug-2021 00:03:03
“With the election date rapidly approaching, Iraq will have our support at every step of the way,” the top UN official in Iraq said at the Security Council meeting on Iraq on Wednesday. UNIFEED

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STORY: UN / IRAQ ELECTIONS
TRT: 3:03
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH /ARABIC /NATS

DATELINE: 25 AUGUST 2021, NEW YORK CITY

SHOTLIST:

FILE

1. Exterior shot, UN Headquarters

25 AUGUST 2021, NEW YORK CITY

2.Wide shot, Security Council in meeting
3.Cutaway, delegates
4.SOUNDBITE (English) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq:
“I wish to commend IHEC not only for its dedication but also for its transformation. Iraq’s authorities and parties would do well to publicly acknowledge IHEC’s achievements so far. And the same goes for its independence. Casting doubt about IHEC’s ability to operate, risks
further eroding voter confidence.”
5.Cutaway, Iraqi delegate
6.SOUNDBITE (English) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq:
“The October elections clearly have the potential to be different from the elections in 2018. However, successful elections are not, and cannot be, the sole responsibility of IHEC. We therefore consistently call on all stakeholders (including government officials, parties, candidates, political forces, civil society organizations, media outlets and voters) to commit to transparent and credible elections - in words and in deeds.”
7.Wide shot, Security Council in meeting
8.SOUNDBITE (English) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq:
“Fear of electoral fraud is being expressed by many. By Iraqi citizens, and also by political parties. Looking back on past events, this fear is well understood. At the same time, it is fair to emphasize that the political parties themselves are the ones who can make or break these elections. No matter how many technical measures are put in place, it is up to them to collectively refrain from any attempt to force or distort election results. It is up to them to stop the buying of loyalties, voter suppression and/or other intentional, illegal actions. It is they who must lead by example, collectively. You only need one bad actor to ruin it for everyone else.”
9.Cutaway, delegates
10.SOUNDBITE (English) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq:
“With the election date rapidly approaching Iraq will have our support at every step of the way. These elections were hard earned. And I can only emphasize the importance of credible elections for the future of Iraq’s young
democracy.”
11.Wide shot, delegates at the table
12.SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Sarhad Sardar Abdulrahman Fatah, Deputy Permanent Representative of Iraq to the United Nations:
“The Iraqi Government continues to implement its program to fulfill the promises it has made to the Iraqi people, despite tremendous challenges. The government is working tirelessly as promised to meet the demands of the people, by preparing for the holding of early free and fair elections while maintaining peace and security, combating terrorism and COVID-19 as well as implementing urgent economic reforms and combating corruption.”
13.Wide shot, delegates at the table

STORYLINE:

“With the election date rapidly approaching, Iraq will have our support at every step of the way,” the top UN official in Iraq said at the Security Council meeting on Iraq on Wednesday (25 Aug).

“These elections were hard earned,” Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq said. “And I can only emphasize the importance of credible elections for the future of Iraq’s young.”

With only 46 days left until Iraq goes to the polls on October 10th, Hennis-Plasschaert noted that the Independent High Electoral Commission has reached several milestones, including finalizing candidate lists and conducting polling day simulations.

“I wish to commend IHEC not only for its dedication but also for its transformation. Iraq’s authorities and parties would do well to publicly acknowledge IHEC’s achievements so far. And the same goes for its independence. Casting doubt about IHEC’s ability to operate, risks further eroding voter confidence,” said Hennis-Plasschaert.

She added that the UN Mission continues to provide technical assistance wherever it can to the Commission. Preparations are also underway for the UN monitoring of the elections, and the Mission is also stepping up its communication efforts aimed at informing the Iraqi voters on election preparations and related UN activities, sharing facts and figures, tackling misinformation and managing public expectations.

The Special Representative added that the elections clearly have the potential to be different from the elections of 2018 but warned that they cannot be the sole responsibility of the Electoral Commission. She called on all parties “to commit to transparent and credible elections - in words and in deeds.”

“Fear of electoral fraud is being expressed by many. By Iraqi citizens, and also by political parties. Looking back on past events, this fear is well understood. At the same time, it is fair to emphasize that the political parties themselves are the ones who can make or break these elections. No matter how many technical measures are put in place, it is up to them to collectively refrain from any attempt to force or distort election results. It is up to them to stop the buying of loyalties, voter suppression and/or other intentional, illegal actions. It is they who must lead by example, collectively,” she said.

Also speaking at the Council’s meeting, Sarhad Sardar Abdulrahman Fatah, the Deputy Permanent Representative of Iraq to the United Nations said “the Iraqi Government continues to implement its program to fulfill the promises it has made to the Iraqi people, despite tremendous challenges. The government is working tirelessly as promised to meet the demands of the people, by preparing for the holding of early free and fair elections while maintaining peace and security, combating terrorism and COVID-19 as well as implementing urgent economic reforms and combating corruption.”
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