News / Africa

Call for Nationwide Strike in Ivory Coast Gathers Little Traction

Alassane Ouattara answers questions from journalists during a press conference at the Golf Hotel in Abidjan, Ivory Coast (File Photo - 06 Jan 2011)
Alassane Ouattara answers questions from journalists during a press conference at the Golf Hotel in Abidjan, Ivory Coast (File Photo - 06 Jan 2011)

In Ivory Coast, a call for a nationwide strike against incumbent president, Laurent Gbagbo, has failed to spark widespread participation, as the regional mediator to the country's post-electoral crisis continues talks in Abidjan. 

U.N.-endorsed presidential election winner,  Alassane Ouattara, called on Ivorians to strike Tuesday in an attempt to ramp up pressure on incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo, who has refused to step down following November's disputed presidential election.

Witnesses in the country's commercial capital, Abidjan said people appeared to be going to work as normal Tuesday and strike participation was concentrated in pro-Ouattara neighborhoods.

Gbagbo shows no signs of budging despite mounting international sanctions, blocked funds, diplomatic pressure and threats of regional military intervention.

African Union mediator and Kenyan prime minister, Raila Odinga, arrived in Abidjan Monday and met with the two leaders.

Following his meeting with Gbagbo, Odinga said there was a chance the two rivals could meet Tuesday.

"We have proposed meeting which we have agreed will take place tomorrow," said Odinga. "This is of course subject to certain conditions being fulfilled."

Ouattara's camp, however, says Mr. Gbagbo must step down before any face-to-face meeting can take place.

Ouattara, who remains holed up in an Abidjan hotel under the protection of U.N. peacekeepers, told VOA that he believes 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," said Ouattara. "I think he thinks this is good for him, but it is very bad for Cote d'Ivoire and the Ivorians."

Gbagbo's government, however, says it is the former rebel fighters backing Ouattara who pose a threat to national security.

The U.N. human rights office says post-electoral violence has killed at least 247 people in Ivory Coast.

Odinga remains in Abidjan, where he met with diplomats and ambassadors representing U.N. Security Council members Tuesday in the hopes of moving negotiations forward.

You May Like

Sunni-Shi’ite Divide Threatens Middle East Stability

Analysts say ancient dispute that traces back to Islamic Revolution is fueling modern day unrest More

Shifting Demographics Lie Beneath Racial Tensions in Ferguson

As Missouri suburb morphed from majority white to majority black, observers say power structure remained static More

Video Artists Shun Russia's Profanity Law

Restriction is toughest since Soviet era, though critics reject move as patronizing and ineffective act of censorship in line with a string of conservative morality laws 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.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid