Iraq's interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi has hailed Sunday's election as a "victory over terrorism".
He spoke as the UN's senior election official said turnout in Sunni areas - where the insurgency has been strongest - was higher than expected.
However he stressed that voting among Sunnis, whose participation in the poll is seen as key to the success of the new government, was nonetheless low.
But regardless of whether they voted, Mr Allawi said, Iraqis must now unite.
"We are entering a new era of our history and all Iraqis - whether they voted or not - should stand side by side to build their future," he said in his first remarks since Sunday's elections for a transitional national assembly.
The overall election turnout has been estimated at about 60%, with some eight million Iraqis voting. It remains unclear how many Iraqis were registered to vote.