Special envoy to visit Iraq after Baghdad blasts: UN
Baghdad: A United Nations special envoy will visit Baghdad on Sunday to make preliminary findings on security in the Iraqi capital after two sets of bombings there killed 250 people, a UN spokesman said.
Assistant Secretary General Oscar Fernandez-Taranco`s trip to Baghdad, which will include talks with Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, comes after intense lobbying by Iraq for an independent probe into massive attacks in central Baghdad in August and this past Sunday.
But a diplomatic source in Baghdad said, on condition of anonymity, that Fernandez-Taranco`s visit was a "preliminary mission" and not the start of an inquiry into the sets of bombings, as requested by the Iraqi government.
"Oscar Fernandez-Taranco`s programme is not yet finalised, but he will certainly meet officials in the Foreign Ministry and other people necessary to the mission," Said Arikat, spokesman for the UN mission in Baghdad, said.
Asked whether he would meet the envoy, Zebari said: "Yes, definitely, I am looking forward to meeting him."
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told a news conference in New York last week that he would send Fernandez-Taranco "in response to a request from the government of Iraq."
On Sunday, twin suicide vehicle bombings targeting government offices in the centre of the capital killed 153 people and wounded more than 500.
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