News / Africa

Ouattara Concerned over Political Violence in Abidjan

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 arrivesat Abidjan international airport on Februa
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 arrivesat Abidjan international airport on Februa

Multimedia

Audio
  • Patrich Achi, Minister of Infrastructure and Ouattara, spoke with Clottey

Peter Clottey

An official of Ivorian President-elect Alassane Ouattara’s government said the leader is expressing deep concern about the ongoing violence following clashes between pro-Ouattara supporters and partisans of embattled President Laurent Gbagbo in the commercial capital, Abidjan.

Patrich Achi, Minister of Infrastructure and Ouattara spokesman, told VOA the violence could force Gbagbo to step down and cede power since, in his words, previous efforts by the international community, including African leaders, to resolve the political stalemate have failed.

“President Ouattara has always been concerned about violence in general and violence in Abidjan in particular. Since the 28th of November (2010), when he won the election, followers of Gbagbo put forward violence hoping that it will finally bring him to accept that former President Gbagbo stays and he doesn’t leave the power. But, this is not possible and it will never happen, ever.” said Achi.

Wednesday, witnesses reported rounds of gunfire and heavy weapons explosions in the volatile Abidjan neighborhood of Abobo. Tuesday, unidentified gunmen killed 10 troops loyal to Gbagbo, where most residents back Ouattara.

“We think that the people in the stronghold of Abobo are the ones that suffer the most from this violence; and they are organizing themselves to resist the (national army); and they have been resisting so far and they are getting stronger and stronger again. I don’t think that the army of Gbagbo that goes there will be able to control the area.”

Gbagbo has so far refused to step down, despite increasing international pressure and threats of “legitimate force” to remove him from power.

Achi said Gbagbo is to blame for the ongoing violence in Abidjan.

“The way the (violence) has started, if it gets to other areas in Abidjan, we might be surprised that, in the next few weeks, former President Gbagbo won’t be to control the city of Abidjan anymore, because people get afraid and frightened; but, at a certain point, they cannot just stand there and be killed every day. I’m afraid violence is going to raise up a little bit and, hopefully, it will make former President Gbagbo to quit office because that is what everybody is waiting for now,” said Achi.

“After all these talks and delegations to find out a peaceful solution, still, he (Gbagbo) wants to stay there, and the economy is going bad, companies are closing, (and) people are out of jobs. This is terrible.”

Achi also said Ouattara is so far pleased with the latest efforts of the African Union to help resolve the political stalemate after its delegation met both rivals.

A team of four African heads of state met with the two presidents separately in Abidjan this week as part of an effort to end the standoff.

The African Union panel will next make a ruling on how the impasse should end. The AU says the panel’s decisions will be legally binding. However, the 53-nation bloc has no way of enforcing those decisions.

Since the disputed election, dozens of Ouattara supporters have been killed or disappeared.  The United Nations says post-election violence has killed some 300 people and driven tens of thousands of refugees into neighboring Liberia.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership 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.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid