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Germany

Germany Calls for Total Transfer of Power to Iraq

German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder on Monday spoke out in favor of a comprehensive transfer of power to Iraq's interim government, including complete control over the country's resources and military. The German leader's comments came just as the United States and Britain prepared to introduce a new U.N. resolution on the restoration of Iraqi sovereignty, including the caretaker government's powers and the question of Iraq's oil revenue. In direct language, Schröder urged Washington to hand over all power to Iraq. "When I say transfer of sovereignty, then I mean it. The responsibilities must be spelled out," he told reporters. If the U.S. holds back on security issues and continues to make decisions about the county's economic policies, it is not transferring all power to the Iraqi people, Schröder said. The definition of sovereignty is the most contentious issue in a prospective Iraqi resolution and crucial for the Bush administration if it hopes to gain the approval of the Security Council, which includes non-permanent member Germany. Schröder, who was adamantly opposed to the Iraq war last year, said Germany and the United States shared a "common interest to stabilize Iraq," and that a disagreement over whether the war was justified was now only of historic relevance.

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