News / Africa

AU Delegation Trying to Solve Ivory Coast Crisis

South African president Jacob Zuma (C), flanked by South African ambassador to Ivory Coast Lallie Ntombizodwa (R), shakes hands with African Union representative to Ivory Coast Ambroise Niyonsaba (L) as he arrives at Abidjan international airport on Febru
South African president Jacob Zuma (C), flanked by South African ambassador to Ivory Coast Lallie Ntombizodwa (R), shakes hands with African Union representative to Ivory Coast Ambroise Niyonsaba (L) as he arrives at Abidjan international airport on Febru

Heads of state from the African Union are traveling to Ivory Coast Monday in hopes of resolving the political crisis between rival governments there.  

Members of a high-level African Union delegation began arriving in Abidjan Monday to meet with the country's rival presidents, though many Ivorian’s remain doubtful that diplomacy will solve the violent post-election crisis, now nearing the end of its third month.

Incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo has refused to give up power, rejecting U.N.-certified election results that showed him losing a November presidential run-off to rival Alassane Ouattara.

Mr. Gbagbo claimed victory after the constitutional court annulled 10 percent of ballots cast.  Both the African Union and the regional bloc ECOWAS have recognized Mr. Ouattara as the winner of the vote.

Analysts have called the AU mediation efforts a last chance for Mr. Gbagbo to cede power gracefully.  The panel includes the leaders of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania, South Africa and Tanzania.

However, Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore is not part of Monday's delegation.  Mr. Compaore served as a regional mediator to Ivory Coast in the run-up to elections, and militant supporters of Mr. Gbagbo accuse him of favoring Mr. Ouattara.  The militants have rejected his presence on the panel and staged a demonstration Sunday at the airport.

The panel has one week to find a way to resolve the political standoff. The African Union says that resolution will be legally binding, though it has no means of enforcing the provision.

Mr. Gbagbo's government says the panel must not challenge the legitimacy of the constitutional council declaration that named him the winner in the election.  Mr. Ouattara's government says any power-sharing arrangement with Mr. Gbagbo is out of the question, and says it will not accept a recount of the ballots.

Mr. Ouattara's prime minister, Guillaume Soro, is calling on Ivorians to stage an Egypt-style revolution against Mr. Gbagbo.

Speaking Thursday in Dakar, Soro said he does not think the African Union panel will find a solution or be able to convince Mr. Gbagbo to leave power.  He says Mr. Gbagbo has gone too far to retreat now. He says the only thing Mr. Gbagbo is open to hearing is that he will be president in some kind of power-sharing agreement, which Soro said would be an anti-democratic move.

November's presidential election was meant to reunite the country following a 2002-2003 civil war. Instead, the United Nations says post-electoral violence has killed nearly 300 people.

Witnesses say Ivorian troops loyal to Mr. Gbagbo killed at least one anti-Gbagbo protestor in Abidjan Monday.  Security forces fired live rounds in the air and used tear gas to disperse similar anti-Gbagbo demonstrations over the weekend.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact 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.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs