The United Nations is stepping up its work in Iraq in a bid to land a final peace—four years after a terrorist bomb in the UN compound in Baghdad killed 22 officials. "Three years of horror have led nowhere. It only produced tit-for-tat destruction and the displacement of 4.2 million people," said special Iraq representative Staffan de Mistura, whose predeccessor was killed in the attack.
One issue De Mistura may become involved with is the dispute over the northern city of Kirkuk, reports the Guardian. "It could become a ticking bomb," warned De Mistura, who has been operating out of Jordan. He said 2008 would be a crucial year when Baghdad needs to push through laws aimed at bridging the divide between Sunni and Shia political groups.