News / Africa

Ivory Coast's Gbagbo Captured, Taken to Ouattara HQ

Ivory Coast's Laurent Gbagbo  (L) and his wife Simone sit in a room at Hotel Golf in Abidjan, after they were arrested, Apr 11 2011
Ivory Coast's Laurent Gbagbo (L) and his wife Simone sit in a room at Hotel Golf in Abidjan, after they were arrested, Apr 11 2011
TEXT SIZE - +

Defiant Ivory Coast leader Laurent Gbagbo has been captured at his residence, ending a four-month power struggle in the West African country.

The now-former president surrendered Monday to forces backing the country's internationally-recognized president, Alassane Ouattara. Pro-Ouattara fighters and French special forces advanced on the residence after airstrikes by French and United Nations helicopters on the presidential compound, where Mr. Gbagbo was entrenched with supporters.

Mr. Gbagbo had refused for months to cede power to Mr. Ouattara, the U.N.-certified winner of last November's presidential election.  

A spokesman for the U.N. mission in Ivory Coast says about 300 members of Mr. Gbagbo's guard surrendered ahead of their leader's capture. He also says no U.N. personnel were involved in the final assault.

Mr. Gbagbo and his wife are now being held at Mr. Ouattara's headquarters, Abidjan's Golf Hotel. The U.N. peacekeeping chief, Alain Le Roy, says Mr. Gbagbo is being held by Mr. Ouattara's forces but asked for and received U.N. protection.

Mr. Ouattara's television station showed images of a tired-looking Mr. Gbagbo in a hotel room, wearing a white T-shirt and surrounded by several people.

Mr. Ouattara's prime minister, Guillaume Soro, told French television that pro-Ouattara forces are now working to secure Abidjan. He called on the remaining pro-Gbagbo forces to stop fighting and switch sides.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the pro-Ouattara forces said that operations are underway to find key Gbagbo supporters such as youth leader Charles Ble Goude.

French and U.N. helicopters initially struck pro-Gbagbo positions in Abidjan last Monday.  U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon said the attacks were meant to prevent Gbagbo forces from attacking civilians with mortars and other heavy weapons.  

Abidjan has endured more than four months of fighting between Gbagbo and Ouattara supporters since the election dispute began in early December. The U.N. said the conflict displaced some 1 million Ivorians, with more than 100,000 fleeing to neighboring Liberia.

Mr. Gbagbo had been president of Ivory Coast since being named the winner of the disputed 2000 election.  He survived a 2002 civil war that split the country into rebel and government-controlled areas.

Mr. Gbagbo then stayed in power more than five years past his mandate, as elections were repeatedly postponed.

You May Like

Photogallery Pope's Easter Prayer: Peace in Ukraine, Syria

Pontiff also calls for end to terrorist acts in Nigeria, violence in Iraq, and success in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians More

Abdullah Holds Lead in Afghan Presidential Election

Country's Election Commission says that with half of the ballots counted, former FM remains in the lead with 44 percent of the vote More

Russia-Ukraine Crisis Could Trigger Cyber War

As tensions between Kyiv and Moscow escalate, so too has frequency of online attacks targeting government, news and financial sites 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.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid