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

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life 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.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs