Chairman Kerry Statement On Iraq Election Results
Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) released the following statement after the announcement of the Iraqi election results:
"As Iraq's Independent High Election Commission (IHEC) releases its provisional results, we congratulate the Iraqi people and political parties on achieving an important milestone toward consolidating their democracy. IHEC, the UN, Iraqi political parties and the 200,000 Iraqis who served as election monitors deserve credit for conducting a successful election for which there appears to be no evidence of widespread fraud.
"I believe that the coming democratic transition is an opportunity to strengthen the foundation of the Iraqi -- American friendship. But while elections are vital to establishing legitimate governance, in emerging democracies they can also be moments of vulnerability. For Iraq's political leaders, the coming weeks are an opportunity to demonstrate true statesmanship and to consolidate Iraq's hard won peace. Successful elections require not just free and fair voting, but that candidates honor the integrity of the results. I urge all Iraqi candidates, and their supporters, to refrain from inflammatory rhetoric and to work to resolve their political disputes through legal channels, in keeping with Iraq's laws and constitution."