Assistant Secretary Carson Provides Update on Situation in Côte d'Ivoire

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
March 31, 2011

Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson provided an update on the situation in Côte d'Ivoire on March 31, 2011. Assistant Secretary Carson underscored that the international community and the United States have invested in seeing a peaceful and democratic future for Côte d'Ivoire. The Assistant Secretary said:

"On November 27, 2010, Alassane Ouattara was elected president of Côte d'Ivoire. The elections were peaceful, and international observers commended the Ivoirian people for their high rate of participation. The United Nations, the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, the African Union, and the international community writ large have reaffirmed President Ouattara's victory over former President Laurent Gbagbo.

"Since December, Laurent Gbagbo has refused to step down in defiance of the international community and the will of the Ivorian people. Over the past four months, the people of Côte d'Ivoire have lived through a political crisis that has devastated their economy, created a humanitarian crisis that threatens the region, and led to the deaths of over 400 Ivoirian citizens.

"This week has seen some of the most intense fighting in Côte d'Ivoire since the political crisis began in late November. The United States calls on all parties to exercise restraint and to make the protection of civilians their highest priority. The people of the Côte d'Ivoire have already paid a very high price for democracy. We call upon both sides to ensure that civilians do not pay an even higher price in the future.

"Those who choose not to heed this call will be held accountable for the atrocities and the human rights violations that they commit. The United Nations and the international community will investigate all alleged human rights violations. Those implicated in directing or carrying out these heinous acts will answer for their actions.

"The United States and the international community have invested in seeing a peaceful and democratic future for Côte d'Ivoire. On March 30, the United Nations Security Council passed a unanimous resolution reaffirming its support for President Alassane Ouattara and calling on the 11,000-strong UN peacekeeping mission in Côte d'Ivoire to step up its protection of Ivoirian citizens, take direct action against those indiscipline forces who have targeted civilians, and to seize heavy weapons. These measures are absolutely essential in preventing more violence.

"This is an important moment for Côte d'Ivoire, a time for all Ivoirians to play a positive and constructive role in the future of their country. The road ahead will not be easy, but the people of Côte d'Ivoire are up to the challenge. President Ouattara has outlined a plan for reconciliation and reconstruction for all of Côte d'Ivoire, and we hope that all Ivoirians will contribute to building a peaceful and prosperous future for their country, a time for all Ivoirians to play a positive and constructive role in the future of their country. The road ahead will not be easy, but the people of Côte d'Ivoire are up to the challenge. President Ouattara has outlined a plan for reconciliation and reconstruction for all of Côte d'Ivoire, and we hope that all Ivoirians will contribute to building a peaceful and prosperous future for their country."

You can read the Assistant Secretary's complete remarks here.

Comments

Comments

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
April 5, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

After the French and UN put on a fireworks display, the bagboy is hunkered down in a bunker surrounded by the legitimate president's forces, according to news reports this morning.

Well that's one way of achieving regime replacement therapy...and hopefully from now on it will take place on a regular basis peaceably through election processes.

Since Russia is "looking into the legality" of this, according to FM Lavrov, and seem to be the bearer of a "wet blanket" on all things having to do with people's aspirations of liberty and sane and rational leadership...I get the impression that the world has changed its attitude while they've been asleep, and the Russians are just a bit disoriented by all these events going on, and not making a whole lot of sense.

This is from the nation that cornered Hitler in his bunker when folks put the "big squeeze" on Nazi Germany.

This is to me why nothing of their recent rhetoric, complaining and whining about process with no "skin in the game", and abstaining from doing the right thing, to position themselves as judge and jury of international commitments to protect populations makes no sense at all.

They lost 20 million to Hitler, maybe they forgot about that after all this time.

You'd think they'd be pretty "gung ho" on the idea of not having to see a repeat of that in any nation.

Maybe Ban Ki Moon would be kind enough to remind Mr. Lavrov of this.

EJ

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