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International Team To Review Iraqi Election Results

Iraqis in the northern city of Kirkuk on 29 December demanding new elections (epa) 29 December 2005 -- A team of international assessors from the Arab world, North America, and Europe is set to review Iraq's parliamentary election results following fraud complaints.

The assessors from the International Mission for Iraqi Elections will include two representatives from the Arab League, one member of the Canadian Association of Former Parliamentarians, and a respected European academic.

A statement said the team was invited to conduct the review on the invitation of the Independent Election Commission of Iraq. It comes as Sunni Arab and secular Shi’ite groups claim the 15 December vote was tainted by fraud and seek a partial rerun of elections.

U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad welcomed the review, saying Iraq needs a government established in "utmost transparency."

Both the United Nations and the United States have described the elections as transparent and rejected calls for a re-run.