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20 July 2005 -- International officials say donor countries have agreed in principle on a new mechanism that gives Iraq the leading role in reconstruction efforts.
Canadian official Michael Bell said the new mechanism -- the Iraq Reconstruction Forum, dubbed the "IRFO" -- will be launched in two weeks.
Bell is chairman of the International Reconstruction Fund Facility for Iraq, a body developed in 2004 to help donor nations channel resources for reconstruction in Iraq.
Bell said that it "will be the Iraqis who will chair the IRFO and will deal with all donors on bilateral and multilateral levels."
Bell was speaking at the end of two days of talks by representatives of 60 countries and international organizations on Iraq's reconstruction.
Bell said Iraqi Planning Minister Barham Salih will head IRFO.
It was not immediately clear how the emerging body will interact with the existing International Reconstruction Fund.
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