News / Africa

UN: Stabilization and Reconciliation Key in Ivory Coast

A Republican Forces soldier runs as security forces loyal to President Alassane Ouattara investigate reports of looting, in the Cocody neighborhood of Abidjan, Ivory Coast, April 13, 2011
A Republican Forces soldier runs as security forces loyal to President Alassane Ouattara investigate reports of looting, in the Cocody neighborhood of Abidjan, Ivory Coast, April 13, 2011
Margaret Besheer

The United Nations top diplomat in Ivory Coast says stabilizing the country and starting the process of reconciliation are among the most pressing priorities.

With the arrest on Monday of former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo signaling an end to the post-election violence that has rocked the country for the past four months, the head of the U.N.’s peacekeeping mission in Ivory Coast, Choi Young-jin, said the challenge now will be to restore law and order and start the process of national healing.

The envoy briefed the U.N. Security Council via a video link from his headquarters in Abidjan. He said there are four major challenges that need the immediate attention of President Alassane Ouattara’s administration.

"The first challenge is the restoration of peace and law and order throughout the country, particularly in Abidjan. The second challenge is the prevention of any further human rights abuses and violations and the delivery of humanitarian assistance - especially in the western part of the country where several serious problems have already been reported. The third challenge is national reconciliation. On this score, President Ouattara has been making a very clear stance in favor of reconciliation as opposed to retribution. The fourth and perhaps most formidable challenge awaiting the Ivorian people, appears to be national reconstruction - particularly with regard to the promotion of education, creation of youth employment, addressing the land ownership problem, poverty eradication and economic development," he said.

Choi said it is also urgent now that President Ouattara be sworn in to office and finish appointing his government. He noted that so far, only 13 of 30 cabinet positions have been filled.

At the Security Council, the U.N. humanitarian chief, Valerie Amos, who recently returned from a mission to Ivory Coast, warned that grave violations of international law have taken place resulting in the deaths of hundreds and the displacement of nearly a million people.

She said many of Abidjan’s five million residents are in crisis, trapped in their homes without food and water because of continuing fears of violence. She noted that food is scarce in the city’s markets and prices have risen sharply. Outside Abidjan, the recent heavy fighting and the presence of large numbers of displaced persons have also had a serious humanitarian impact.

Amos said the United Nations has appealed for $300 million to cover priority needs, but only 15 percent of that - or $57 million - has been committed.

For its part, the U.N. Security Council encouraged President Ouattara to form an inclusive and broad-based government and urged his government to cooperate with all investigations into human rights violations during the crisis. The council also urged all Ivorians to refrain from further violence and reprisal attacks and instead work together to promote reconciliation through dialogue.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Srebrenica Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs countermeasure at UN More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants 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.
Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prisoni
X
Heather Murdock
July 01, 2015 8:59 PM
As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs