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Germany, France Find US Draft Resolution on Iraq Insufficient - 2003-09-04

The leaders of Germany and France say a U.S. draft resolution before the U.N. Security Council seeking money and troops from all nations to help rebuild Iraq does not do enough to put the United Nations at the center of Iraq's reconstruction.

French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder say the draft does not give the United Nations a large enough role in post-war Iraq, and also does not meet the goal of turning over political responsibility to the Iraqi people.

However, the leaders, who held an informal meeting in Dresden, Germany, Thursday say they hope Washington will be open to changes in the resolution. Both France and Germany strongly opposed the Iraq war, and France has a veto on the Security Council.

Mr. Chirac says the two leaders are ready to study the draft resolution, but they believe it falls short on their key priority - the transfer of political responsibility to a new Iraqi government as quickly as possible.

Mr. Schroeder says the proposal shows movement in the U.S. position, but does not go far enough. He says France and Germany want to help bring stability and democracy to Iraq, but this can only come about if the United Nations takes over responsibility for the political process.

The United States has offered a draft resolution that would authorize an expanded multinational force in Iraq, as Washington seeks troops and money from all nations. The United States would not give up political or military control of Iraq under the draft. The Bush administration is insisting that any expanded military mission in Iraq, even if put under the U.N. flag, will remain under the command of an American general.

U.S. officials say the administration plans to ask the United Nations to transform the U.S.-led force in Iraq into a multinational force, and to play a key role in establishing an Iraqi government.

India, Russia, France, and other countries refuse to contribute soldiers to Iraq unless a multinational force is approved by the United Nations.