News / Africa

    Rival Ivory Coast Governments Lobby for Support Before AU Summit

    Alassane Ouattara answers questions from journalists during a press conference at the Golf Hotel in Abidjan, Ivory Coast (File Photo - 06 Jan 2011)
    Alassane Ouattara answers questions from journalists during a press conference at the Golf Hotel in Abidjan, Ivory Coast (File Photo - 06 Jan 2011)

    Ivory Coast's rival presidents are working to secure international support for their competing governments ahead of this weekend's African Union summit in Ethiopia.

    A power struggle that has played out on the streets of Abidjan, the halls of the regional central bank, and the international cocoa market now moves to the African Union summit where Ivory Coast's incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo and the United-Nations-certified winner of November's vote, former prime minister Alassane Ouattara, are both hoping for decisive action against their rival.

    Mr. Ouattara's prime minister Guillaume Soro has been traveling the continent to shore up support for a Ouattara government that remains confined to an Abidjan resort hotel. In Zambia, Soro said African allies of democracy may need to remove Mr. Gbagbo by force.

    "Our fore fathers did it while fighting for independence, our elders did the same way fighting for multiparty, today we have to fight for democracy," he said.

    Soro said it is time African Union leaders make clear to Mr. Gbagbo that he must go.

    "Cote d'Ivoire government is asking the African Union to take strong decision against Mr. Laurent Gbagbo and his clan who is refusing to hand over power peacefully," he said.

    Mr. Gbagbo's government dismisses the threat of regional military intervention as a bluff and says West African leaders will fail in their efforts to deny Mr. Gbagbo access to state funds by changing the head of the regional central bank.

    Gbagbo government spokesman Ahoua Don Mello says the regional economy is far too dependent on Ivory Coast to function without it.

    Don Mello says the West African central bank and the West African monetary union cannot survive without Ivory Coast. And he says everyone knows that.

    The economic battle between these rival governments has also extended to cocoa exports with Mr. Ouattara calling for a month-long ban and Mr. Gbagbo's government saying it is business as usual in the world's largest cocoa producer.

    The African Union initially joined the United Nations, the European Union, and the United States in demanding that Mr. Gbagbo leave power because Mr. Ouattara is the rightful winner of Ivory Coast's election.

    But the African Union opens its summit with that unanimity diminished as South Africa, Uganda, and Angola now say there must be a negotiated settlement that takes into account Mr. Gbagbo's concerns about the fairness of the vote. Mr. Gbagbo's claim to re-election is based on the constitutional counsel annulling Ouattara votes that it said were fraudulent.




    You May Like

    US Watching as North Korea Opens Biggest Political Meeting in Decades

    As Workers' Party Congress opens, Washington anticipating possibility of another missile launch or nuclear test as top officials gather

    Video Pop Icon Prince Quietly Helped Afghan Orphans for Years

    He sent thousands of dollars to help an aid group rebuild a training center for orphan boy and girl scouts in Kabul, but kept his involvement secret

    Britain’s Muslims See London Mayor Race as Victory

    Mere running of 45-year-old former government minister and son of Pakistani immigrants Sadiq Khan seen by many as turning point

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Donations Rescue Afghan Parents, Children From Forced Labori
    X
    May 05, 2016 6:44 PM
    A Facebook campaign organized by a VOA radio host raised 150,000 Afghan rupees to rescue a family from forced labor at a brick kiln in Nangarhar province – the result of the father’s unpaid debt. Video by a VOA reporter in Jalalabad went viral this week and triggered the Facebook campaign.
    Video

    Video Donations Rescue Afghan Parents, Children From Forced Labor

    A Facebook campaign organized by a VOA radio host raised 150,000 Afghan rupees to rescue a family from forced labor at a brick kiln in Nangarhar province – the result of the father’s unpaid debt. Video by a VOA reporter in Jalalabad went viral this week and triggered the Facebook campaign.
    Video

    Video Kurdish Troops Recount Firefight Which Killed US Navy SEAL

    A U.S. Navy SEAL killed Tuesday, when Islamic State fighters punched through Kurdish lines in northern Iraq, was part of a quick reaction force sent to extract other U.S. troops trapped by the surprise offensive. VOA's Kawa Omar spoke with Kurdish troops in the town of Telskuf -- the scene of what U.S. officials called a "dynamic firefight."
    Video

    Video British Lawmakers Warn EU Exit Talks Could Last A Decade

    Leaving the European Union would mean difficult negotiations that could take years to complete, according to a bipartisan group of British lawmakers. While the group did not recommend a vote either way, the lawmakers noted trade deals between the EU and non-EU states take between four and nine years on average. Henry Ridgwell reports on the mounting debate over whether Britain should stay or exit the EU as the June vote approaches.
    Video

    Video NASA Astronauts Train for Commercial Space Flights

    Since the last Shuttle flight in 2011, the United States has been relying on Russian rockets to launch fresh crews to the International Space Station. But that may change in the next few years. NASA and several private space companies are developing advanced capsules capable of taking humans into low orbit and beyond. As VOA's George Putic reports, astronauts are already training for commercial spacecraft in flight simulators.
    Video

    Video US Worried Political Chaos in Iraq Will Hurt IS Fight

    The White House is expressing concern about rising political chaos in Iraq and the impact it could have on the fight against the Islamic State. The U.S. says Iraq needs a stable, central government to help push back the group. But some say Baghdad may not have a unified government any time soon. VOA's White House correspondent Mary Alice Salinas reports.
    Video

    Video Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limited

    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Taliban Threats Force Messi Fan to Leave Afghanistan

    A young Afghan boy, who recently received autographed shirts and a football from his soccer hero Lionel Messi, has fled his country due to safety concerns. He and his family are now taking refuge in neighboring Pakistan. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.
    Video

    Video Major Rubbish Burning Experiment Captures Destructive Greenhouse Gases

    The world’s first test to capture environmentally harmful carbon dioxide gases from the fumes of burning rubbish took place recently in Oslo, Norway. The successful experiment at the city's main incinerator plant, showcased a method for capturing most of the carbon dioxide. VOA’s Deborah Block has more.
    Video

    Video EU Visa Block Threatens To Derail EU-Turkey Migrant Deal

    Turkish citizens could soon benefit from visa-free travel to Europe as part of the recent deal between the EU and Ankara to stem the flow of refugees. In return, Turkey has pledged to keep the migrants on Turkish soil and crack down on those who are smuggling them. Brussels is set to publish its latest progress report Wednesday — but as Henry Ridgwell reports from London, many EU lawmakers are threatening to veto the deal over human rights concerns.
    Video

    Video Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Ruling

    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Painting Captures President Lincoln Assassination Aftermath

    A newly restored painting captures the moments following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865. It was recently unveiled at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, where America’s 16th president was shot. It is the only known painting by an eyewitness that captures the horror of that fateful night. VOA’s Julie Taboh tells us more about the painting and what it took to restore it to its original condition.
    Video

    Video Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroad

    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora