US trapped in Iraq, says Annan

Published November 22, 2006

GENEVA, Nov 21: US forces are trapped in Iraq, United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan said on Monday, warning Washington must find the right time to leave without plunging the country deeper into chaos.

“On the question of the military presence, it is a difficult issue. The US is in a way trapped in Iraq, trapped in the sense that it cannot stay and it cannot leave,” Mr Annan told a press conference.

“The timing of its departure will have to be optimal,” he added.

An eventual withdrawal of US forces should “not lead to a further deterioration”, Mr Annan cautioned.

He said Washington should instead “try and get it to a level that when it withdraws, the Iraqis themselves will be able to maintain a situation that would ensure a reasonable secure environment”.

With just 40 days to go before the end of his mandate, it was the first time Mr Annan had so clearly stated that the United States should withdraw from Iraq at some point, sources close to the secretary general said.

Mr Annan said in Geneva that one key immediate step for Iraq was to revise its constitution to ensure that power and revenue was shared fairly between its feuding communities, especially to allay the fears of Sunnis.—AFP

Opinion

Editorial

Cipher inquiry
Updated 04 Oct, 2022

Cipher inquiry

Inquiry will likely end nowhere, or, worse, be used as a tool of victimisation.
Further delay?
04 Oct, 2022

Further delay?

KARACHI Administrator Murtaza Wahab’s announcement that the second phase of Sindh’s LG polls — primarily...
Losing to England
04 Oct, 2022

Losing to England

AFTER tantalisingly close finishes in the fourth and fifth matches against an England side visiting the country for...
An inexplicable delay
03 Oct, 2022

An inexplicable delay

AFTER a flurry of activity a couple of months ago, geared towards filling the vacancies in the apex court — an...
Dire situation
Updated 03 Oct, 2022

Dire situation

If there is any time for the civilian leadership to show unity, it is now.
Russian annexation
03 Oct, 2022

Russian annexation

AS Russia and the West play a zero-sum game in Ukraine, Moscow’s official annexation of four Ukrainian regions it...