News / Africa

African Union Mediator Returns to Ivory Coast

Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga (File)
Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga (File)

The African Union mediator to Ivory Coast's political crisis is heading back to the nation's commercial capital, Abidjan, after meeting with the head of the West African alliance that is threatening military force to remove the incumbent president. The internationally-recognized winner of Ivory Coast's vote says the incumbent president is stalling for time to re-arm.

Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga's return to Abidjan follows talks in Nigeria with President Goodluck Jonathan, who chairs the Economic Community of West African States.

That alliance, which is known as ECOWAS, is threatening to use military force to remove Ivory Coast's incumbent president, Laurent Gbagbo, if he does not hand over power to the internationally-recognized winner of November's vote, former prime minister Alassane Ouattara.

Mr. Odinga says he returns to Abidjan with an open mind as both the African Union and ECOWAS want a peaceful resolution to the crisis. He says military force is the last resort because it will likely cost the lives of innocent people and disrupt the Ivorian economy.

Mediation by both ECOWAS and the African Union has so far produced no concrete results as Mr. Gbagbo and Mr. Ouattara both lead competing governments in Abidjan.

African leaders have ruled out a power-sharing agreement because they say Mr. Ouattara is the country's duly-elected president in a vote certified by the United Nations. Mr. Gbagbo says he won re-election when his allies on the constitutional counsel annulled enough Ouattara votes to make Mr. Gbagbo the winner.

Mr. Ouattara told VOA that he believes Mr. Gbagbo is not serious about international mediation and is stalling for time.

"Stalling allows him to import arms, ammunition, and to recruit mercenaries and militia so that he can continue to kill the Ivorian people. I think he thinks it is good for him, but it is very bad for Cote d'Ivoire and the Ivorians," he said.

Mr. Gbagbo's foreign minister, Alcide Djedje, says it is former rebels backing Mr. Ouattara who pose a threat to national security. He says the Gbagbo government will continue its blockade of a resort hotel where Mr. Ouattara is living because 300 heavily-armed rebels can not be allowed to move freely in a neighborhood so close to Mr. Gbagbo's residence.

ECOWAS defense chiefs meet in Mali Wednesday to discuss how best to deal with the crisis in Ivory Coast.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More