News / Africa

UN Calls for Restraint in Violence Between Rival Ivorian Governments

Families flee from the Abobo district of Abidjan, February 23, 2011
Families flee from the Abobo district of Abidjan, February 23, 2011

The United Nations mission in Ivory Coast is calling for restraint from both rival governments as violence continues in neighborhoods of Abidjan that support the U.N.-certified winner of November's vote.

The U.N. mission in Ivory Coast is concerned about the level of violence in Abidjan over the last few days, as African Union heads of state met with both incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo and the U.N.-certified winner of the election, former prime minister Alassane Ouattara.

In a written statement, the U.N. mission condemned what it calls, "the inappropriate use of force," especially the use of heavy weapons.  It urged all parties to "show a sense of restraint as political and diplomatic efforts are being made at the highest level to find a peaceful solution to the post-electoral crisis."

Nearly 20 people have been killed in the last few days during violence between Ouattara supporters and the pro-Gbagbo military in the Abidjan neighborhoods of Abobo and Koumassi.  Among the dead are 10 soldiers that authorities say were killed in an ambush Tuesday.

The African Union panel of heads of state from Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania, South Africa, and Tanzania now have one week to decide how best to end this standoff.  The African Union says the decision will be legally binding on all Ivorians.

But the AU  has no mechanism for enforcing its decisions, and both sides in the conflict have expressed doubts about the impact of this mediation.

Gbagbo's government says it will accept the African Union decision only if it does not challenge the legitimacy of a constitutional council finding that says Gbagbo won.

Ouattara says he is pessimistic about the AU mediation because past efforts have failed to convince Gbagbo to give up power peacefully. Ouattara's prime minister says Ivorians should expect nothing from the African Union and should instead rise up in an Egyptian-style revolt to drive Gbagbo from power.

Ouattara supporters criticized South African President Jacob Zuma after his government suggested a power-sharing interim administration ahead of new elections.

Gbagbo supporters surrounded Abidjan's airport before the African Union delegation arrived on Monday, prompting Burkinabe President Blaise Compaore to drop out of the trip because of security concerns. Gbagbo supporters say Compaore is not a neutral negotiator because of his long-standing support for Ouattara.

You May Like

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video Survivor Video Testimonies Recount Horrors of Guatemalan Genocide

During a conflict that spanned more than three decades, tens of thousands of indigenous Mayans were killed More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations 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