News / Africa

UN Peacekeepers Want More Troops for Ivory Coast

An U.N. peacekeeper in Ivory Coast stands guard by an UN helicopter used to transport officials and journalists from UNOCI headquarters to the Hotel du Golf, the temporary headquarters of Alassane Ouattara, in Abidjan, 3 Jan 2011
An U.N. peacekeeper in Ivory Coast stands guard by an UN helicopter used to transport officials and journalists from UNOCI headquarters to the Hotel du Golf, the temporary headquarters of Alassane Ouattara, in Abidjan, 3 Jan 2011

The United Nations says it needs more troops in Ivory Coast to resolve a political crisis between the internationally-recognized winner of the country's presidential election and the incumbent leader who refuses to yield power.

The head of United Nations peacekeeping says he will ask the Security Council for as many as 2,000 additional troops for Ivory Coast. And Alain Le Roy says he hopes those soldiers will arrive here in the next few weeks.

The current force of nearly 10,000 troops is deployed throughout the country, including parts of the north that are still controlled by former rebels who back Alassane Ouattara.

U.N. peacekeepers are also guarding a resort hotel in Abidjan that Mr. Ouattara has not left since Ivory Coast's electoral commission declared him the winner of November's election. Incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo says he is the winner because the constitutional council annulled as fraudulent nearly ten percent of all ballots cast.

The Economic Community of West African States, the African Union, the European Union and the United States say Mr. Ouattara is the duly-elected president and Mr. Gbagbo must step down.

Mr. Gbagbo wants the entire U.N. peacekeeping force to leave Ivory Coast because he says it no longer has the confidence of the people.

U.N. peacekeepers would be compelled to leave a country at the head of state's request, as they did this past year in Chad. But the United Nations no longer recognizes Mr. Gbabgo's authority and has seated in New York a new Ivorian ambassador named by Mr. Ouattara.

Following talks with West African heads of state in Abidjan this week, Mr. Gbagbo agreed to negotiate a peaceful end to the crisis without preconditions. But the regional alliance says that does not remove its threat to use force to drive him from power.

James Gbeho is the president of the ECOWAS alliance. He says regional leaders understand the difficulties in mounting such a force but will not hesitate to do so if the crisis can not be resolved peacefully. "We, of course, are aware of the dangers in the force option particularly in a country like Cote d'Ivoire where almost all citizens and ethnic groups of our ECOWAS region are represented. And so it is an option that must be used with a lot of circumspection. But if push comes to shove, that is what is going to be used," he said.

Mr. Ouattara says regional military intervention would not lead to a large-scale conflict because the operation would only need to remove one person, Mr. Gbagbo.

You May Like

Video British Fighters On Frontline of ISIS Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Multimedia Hit Song Delivers Ebola Message in Liberia

'Ebola in Town' has danceable beat, while also delivering serious message about avoiding infection More

Video New Technology Gives Surgeons Unprecedented Views of Patients’ Bodies

Technology offers real-time, interactive, medical visualization and is multi-dimensional 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