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UN Resolution on Iraq Needed, Blair Says - 2004-04-16

British Prime Minister Tony Blair says the United Nations should play a key role in Iraq's transition to sovereignty.

Mr. Blair, who meets with President Bush in Washington Friday, discussed the situation in Iraq with U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan in New York Thursday.

As a result of the continuing unrest in Iraq, the British prime minister says, a new Security Council resolution is required, to allow a smooth political transition in Baghdad.

At a joint news conference, Mr. Blair and Mr. Annan both acknowledged the recent upsurge in violence in Iraq has hampered efforts to reach a consensus among Iraqis on ways to form a transitional government. The U.S.-led Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq is due to turn over power to an Iraqi administration on June 30.

Mr. Annan's special U.N. envoy, Lakhdar Brahimi, has been trying to work out a political transition plan acceptable to a wide range of Iraqis. He is due to present his recommendations at the U.N. Security Council later this month.