Showing posts tagged as "cote d'ivoire"
Showing posts tagged cote d'ivoire
International Crisis Group Warns on Cote d’Ivoire | Council on Foreign Relations
By John Campbell
The International Criminal Court (ICC) at the Hague recently unsealed an arrest warrant against former first lady Simone Gagbo. In effect, she is charged with being a full accomplice in the crimes of which her husband, former President Laurent Gagbo, is accused. But Cote d’Ivoire’s troubles go beyond the personalities of the former regime. The International Crisis Group (ICG), a highly respected non-governmental organization that has a special focus on governance and security issues, issued on November 26, a sobering analysis that concludes that political and security issues continue to threaten Cote d’Ivoire’s recovery following more than a decade of civil war.
ICG warns Cote d’Ivoire could return to crisis, if…… | West Africa Democracy Radio
Cote d’Ivoire could slip back into crisis if the government fails to promote initiatives for peaceful co-existence between elements of the former regime and rebel forces constituting the current national army, the International Crisis Group (ICG) has warned.
ICG said in its latest report, Cote d’Ivoire is walking a dangerous path toward polarization by repeating mistakes made by previous governments, with Ivorian forces being divided, where hardliners in the political class are firmly committed to consolidating their military victory.
Photo: Africa Renewal/Flickr
CrisisWatch N°109, 1 September 2012
A series of sectarian clashes and tit-for-tat kidnappings in Lebanon prompted fears that the Syrian conflict is spilling over. At least 18 were killed and hundreds injured towards the end of August in clashes between al-Assad Alawite supporters and Sunni opponents in Tripoli.
In Syriaitself, UN/Arab League special envoy Kofi Annan resigned amid continued diplomatic deadlock. The discovery of over 300 bodies in Darya prompted calls for an investigation and allegations the regime had massacred yet more civilians. Fighting escalated in Aleppo and Damascus as rebel bombings and government airstrikes continued. The Assad regime continues to suffer high-profile defections, including that of the newly appointed Prime Minister Riyad Hijab.
Turkey experienced the worst violence in decades as Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) attacks intensified throughout the month in the south east, killing dozens in the face of ever-stronger military responses. The flow-on effects of the Syrian conflict are increasingly straining the country’s capacity with the number of military defectors and refugees flowing across the border topping 78,000 by 24 August.
Growing frustration with the ruling coalition’s perceived lack of progress on economic and social issues led to protests across Tunisia. Demonstrations in Sfax and Sidi Bouzid, the birthplace of the 2011 revolution, turned violent, with police responding to protests using tear gas and rubber bullets, wounding and arresting dozens of protestors. Tensions further escalated mid-month as a proposed constitutional amendment to the status of women led to a 6,000-strong protest in support of women’s rights.
In Côte d’Ivoire a string of deadly attacks hit military and police targets across the country. Pro-government media blamed Ivorian Popular Front (FPI) supporters for the attacks, claims which were rejected by the FPI, who alleged government involvement in mid-month raids on FPI headquarters and pro-Gbagbo newspapers which injured two.
Political and social tensions turned violent in Guinea. Thesecurity forces killed seven protestors in two separate demonstrations in the country’s south and north east. Further unauthorised opposition protests calling for free elections on 27 August saw police fire tear gas on demonstrators and shoot at opposition leaders.
In India, last month’s violence in the north-eastern state of Assam spread to three new districts. At least 95 people have been killed and 400,000 people displaced, with tens of thousands of northeastern migrants fleeing major cities amid rumours of reprisals. Widespread general strikes in Assam also triggered riots in several towns, leading the state government to declare a one-month ban to ease tensions.
In Colombia, thegovernment declared that exploratory peace talks with FARC rebel commanders, aimed at ending the country’s 48-year civil conflict, had started. The country’s second biggest rebel group, the ELN, may also join the talks. Crisis Group identifies a conflict resolution opportunity for Colombia.
Photo: Fabio Rodrigues Pozzebom/Wikimedia Commons
Ivory Coast ex-leader’s party in disarray | AP
By Robbie Corey-Boulet
Each morning, briefcase in hand, Laurent Boblet takes two taxis and two minibuses to the headquarters of the Ivorian Popular Front, the party of Ivory Coast’s former strongman who is now facing international charges of crimes against humanity.
Photo: VOA-M Motta/Flickr
Africa: How Will West African Posturing Affect Guinea Bissau? | Think Africa Press
By: Bram Posthumus
There are currently 600 West African troops in Guinea Bissau who will supposedly guarantee peace and security through the country’s period of transition.
The arrangement, brokered by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) at their summit in Dakar, early May, became necessary after the Guinea Bissau army staged a coup on April 12, which dissolved an almost complete electoral process.
In addition to the troops, the arrangement provides for a transitional government, with a president and a cabinet of ministers who must take care of the country’s affairs and prepare for its next elections.
Photo: colleen_taugher / Flickr
Reuters | Analysis: Post-war Ivory Coast nurtures second “miracle”
By Joe Bavier
From his lagoon-side allotment in Ivory Coast’s economic capital Abidjan, Moussa Yanda has a ringside seat to watch the foundations of a $290-million toll bridge slowly rise up from the shore.
“I love watching it,” enthused the softly-spoken 45-year-old as he packed up his garden tools for the day. “When things are developing, we realize we’re going to make it through this.”
Little over a year ago such optimism was scarce. Mortar bombs were pouring down around Yanda’s city garden as the West African country slipped into a civil war that claimed over 3,000 lives and forced thousands more to flee their homes.
Now, helped by billions of dollars of donor cash, President Alassane Ouattara wants to shore up the peace with a dash for economic growth like the “Ivorian miracle” which turned the country into a regional powerhouse after independence in the 1960s.
Internationally recognized as winner of a presidential election in December 2010, Ouattara had to wait over four months to enter office as incumbent Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down, pushing the country towards self-destruction.
Old ethnic wounds were opened in the violence that brought the economy of the world’s top cocoa-grower to a halt. Ouattara spent much of the conflict in an Abidjan hotel besieged by pro-Gbagbo forces before his northern allies, backed by French troops, ejected Gbagbo from his palace.
Ouattara, a 70-year-old former top International Monetary Fund official, appears determined to make up for lost time. Each day a new strip of pot-holed road is patched up and the mirror-windowed skyscrapers of Abidjan’s Plateau financial district now show few signs of the battles waged there.
Ivory Coast security forces accused of killings, arbitrary arrests and other human rights violations are acting alone and not under government orders, a United Nations official said Wednesday, as the West African nation struggles to impose order after months of violence and chaos.Doudou Diene, the U.N.’s independent expert on human rights in Ivory Coast, said in Wednesday’s report that most of the violations in the country result “less from the state’s complicity than from its failure to prevent them, because of the difficulty of reforming the security sector.”
Officials in Ivory Coast did not respond to requests for comment Wednesday. An Ivorian official said earlier this month that the government was aware of lawlessness in the country and was attempting to curb it, but that it was “difficult” because of the amount of illegal weapons in circulation.
Diene implicated government forces in 27 cases of torture and inhuman and degrading treatment, 22 cases of arbitrary arrest and 9 killings during the last months of 2011. His report was based on two visits to Ivory Coast in November and December. U.N. spokesman Martin Seutcheu in Geneva said Diene presented the report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva Wednesday morning.
Ivory Coast was plunged into chaos after former strongman Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down after losing a 2010 election to elected President Alassane Ouattara. The U.N. says at least 3,000 people were killed in the ensuing violence. Gbagbo was sent to the International Criminal Court last year to face charges of murder, rape and other crimes allegedly committed by his supporters.
Ivory Coast’s new military, the Republican Forces of Ivory Coast, is composed mostly of rebel soldiers who helped bring Ouattara to power last spring.
The government has attempted to merge the former rebels, who hail from the predominantly Muslim north, with members of former military. Those two armed groups fought each other during the 2011 violence, and have a long history of political and ethnic division.
Diene cited the government’s difficulties in merging the forces.
“The promised creation of a national army reflecting the country’s ethnic, religious and cultural diversity has been delayed because those who participated in the rebellion have differing backgrounds and have not all received standard military training,” he reported.
Human rights groups questioned some aspects of the U.N. report.
A researcher at Human Rights Watch said the report “shies away” from criticism.
“As he continues his vital work after a decade of grave human rights abuses, the Independent Expert should look more deeply at the role of the Republican Forces in ongoing abuses and at the one-sided justice that threatens to further political-ethnic tensions,” Matt Wells said.
The International Crisis Group also said that the violations are still the government’s responsibility.
“I share the view that most violations … are linked to the lack of progress in initial steps of security sector reform,” said Gilles Yabi, West Africa Project Director of the International Crisis Group. The violations, he said, “have to do with the indiscipline of (the Republican Forces), lack of clear chain of command and control, and a strong sense of impunity.”
Photo: US Mission Geneva/Flickr