News / Africa

Ouattara Moves to Restore Security to Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara, April 11 2011
Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara, April 11 2011

Multimedia

President Alassane Ouattara is moving to restore security in Ivory Coast one week after his country's political crisis ended with the arrest of former president Laurent Gbagbo. Mr. Gbagbo held on to power with the help of the military, refusing to recognize that he lost November's vote.

The dramatic capture of Mr. Gbagbo, who was holding out in an underground bunker at the presidential compound, brings to an end more than four months of political uncertainty in Ivory Coast where Mr. Gbagbo and Mr. Ouattara both claimed the presidency.

Mr. Ouattara has ordered his justice minister to prepare charges against Mr. Gbagbo and his wife, Simone, who ran the country for ten years and tried to hold on to power even when the African Union and the international community recognized Mr. Ouattara as the duly-elected leader.



More than 1,000 people died in the battle between rival presidents as pro-Ouattara forces fought their way south toward Abidjan where United Nations and French attack helicopters bombed Gbagbo heavy artillery and rocket launchers.

Jaqueline Yin and her daughter hid in their home. "We were shut inside for three days. We could not eat, could not eat. We had to move to another neighborhood, but the fighting was somewhere else, so we were OK. After three days we got out and now I am walking around to see how things are," she said.

Modest Danon says the fight for Abidjan was the only way to remove Mr. Gbagbo from power and respect the will of voters. "The last week was hard for the Ivorian people because of the fight between pro-Gbagbo and pro-Ouattara forces. But the victory by President Ouattara is a good thing because he is recognized by the international community and was elected by the Ivorian people. Everyone wants to see their lives improve and the country be better organized," he said.

Life is quickly returning to something closer to normal within days of Mr. Gbagbo's capture. Produce from the interior is once again reaching Abidjan markets now that roads are cleared of combat. Most of the big grocery stores and pharmacies are open. Fuel is readily available.

Jaquiline Yin is hoping for a better future for her daughter. "In the future, now that we have a president, life will better. Now that it is all over and we have a new president, life will be good," she said.

Modest Danon says President Ouattara has what it takes to make a difference. "My hope is that we will have a good president here. He is an economist who should be able to make Ivory Coast better because everyone wants enough work and enough to eat to end the suffering of our country," he said.

President Ouattara says the challenges are considerable but can be overcome if everyone stays calm and treats one and other with respect. "We are still in a delicate situation. We still need to secure the country, especially Abidjan, these steps are essential and will still take a few months," he said.

President Ouattara is giving himself two months to completely restore security in Ivory Coast.  In that time, he intends to renew cocoa exports, restart the oil refinery, and reopen banks to get the economy moving again while restoring essential public services to improve conditions for a society disrupted by nearly 10 years of civil war, instability, and political violence.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama Defends Immigration Action

Obama says with his executive action on immigration, enforcement resources will be focused on 'felons, not families; criminals, not children' More

US-Led Airstrikes in Syria Kill Over 900: Monitoring Group

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the toll includes more than 50 civilians, five of them women and eight of them children More

Report: Obama Broadens US Combat Role in Afghanistan

The New York Times says resident Barack Obama has signed a classified order extending the role of US troops in Afghanistan for another year 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.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid