New York Times November 9, 2005 U.N. Extends Mandate In Iraq For U.S. Troops By Warren Hoge UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 8 - The Security Council on Tuesday unanimously adopted a one-year renewal of the United Nations mandate for the United States-led multinational force in Iraq. The resolution, sponsored by Britain, Denmark, Japan, Romania and the United States, extends the mandate until Dec. 31, 2006, but calls for a review of the decision by June 15 and allows for the ending of the mandate at any point if Iraq requests it. The review clause was added as a compromise with the demands of France and Russia, which initially asked that the term be extended for only six months. Commenting after the vote, John R. Bolton, the United States ambassador, said, "We thought the manner in which the resolution was adopted in a constructive, cooperative and very rapid fashion was a good sign." Samir Shakir M. Sumaidaie, the Iraqi ambassador, said, "We note with satisfaction the manner in which this resolution was passed in an environment of harmony and agreement." The coalition's mandate was established by the Security Council in June 2004 and would have expired with the end of Iraq's transitional government, which occurs when national elections are held next month. The United States sought an early renewal to spare the incoming elected government the burden of having to make a request for international military assistance so early in its existence and to forestall the possible resurgence of any Security Council disagreement or the exit of any of the countries still in the coalition. The measure also extends arrangements for depositing oil and natural gas profits into the Development Fund for Iraq, and for oversight of the fund by the International Advisory and Monitoring Board. Mr. Bolton noted that under the resolution, the new government could act on its own at any time. The resolution had its origins in a request to the Security Council from Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari. In a letter on Oct. 27, he said Iraq needed the continued support of the multinational force because its own forces were not yet ready to take on the responsibility of establishing "lasting peace and security." In a letter two days later, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told the Council that the United States was committed to helping Iraq achieve that goal. I guess the UN is backing the "illegal" war. Not that anything the UN says carries any weight.