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Abstract: L’arrivée au pouvoir du président élu Ouattara ne doit pas masquer la réalité. La Côte d’Ivoire reste un pays fragile et instable. Les atrocités commises après le second tour de l’élection présidentielle du 28 novembre 2010 et la tentative de confiscation par tous les moyens du pouvoir perdu dans les urnes par Laurent Gbagbo ont renforcé les tensions communautaires déjà très vives. Les prochains mois seront cruciaux. Il appartient au nouveau gouvernement de ne pas sous-estimer les menaces qui pèseront pendant longtemps sur la paix et de rompre avec la légèreté et l’ivresse du pouvoir qui ont conduit le pays à des choix désastreux au cours des deux dernières décennies. La communauté internationale doit maintenir un regard attentif sur la période actuelle de transition et jouer sa partition dans les domaines de la sécurité, de l’économie et de la coordination de la réponse humanitaire. Le président doit prendre des décisions courageuses dans les registres de la sécurité, de la justice, du dialogue politique, du redémarrage économique et intégrer un élément de réconciliation dans chacun de ces domaines.
Abstract: Côte d'Ivoire security forces and a state-backed militia are creating a climate of fear that is preventing hundreds of thousands of people displaced by post-election violence from returning to their homes, Amnesty International said in a report released today.
"We want to go home, but we can't" Côte d'Ivoire's continuing crisis of displacement and insecurity describes how ethnically targeted killings and attacks by the government security forces and a militia composed of Dozos - traditional hunters - have left the population unable to leave the relative safety of temporary camps.
"The stalemate that is keeping more than half a million people from their homes cannot be allowed to continue," said Gaëtan Mootoo, Amnesty International's West Africa researcher.
"The authorities must act to establish a clear chain of command and disband militia groups who, despite the end of the conflict, continue to spread fear among the population."
Amnesty International's report details how government security forces and the Dozo continued to kill and otherwise target people solely because of their ethnic group even after the inauguration of President Alassane Ouattara.
Abstract: This is Security Council Report’s fourth Cross-Cutting Report on Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict. Nine months have passed since our third report came out in late October 2010, but much has happened in the area of protection of civilians during this period. The crisis in Libya and the post-electoral violence in Côte d’Ivoire stand out as two of the most important protection challenges for the Security Council. But there were also continuing protection concerns in other situations such as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Somalia and Sudan. Most recently, the situations in Syria and Yemen have caused growing concern among many Council members.
The present report involves a change to our cycle of reporting. Our previous cross-cutting reports were published every 12 months towards the end of the year. The rationale for changing the cycle flows from the fact that our statistical analysis compares calendar years, so it seemed that an earlier publication date each year would make more sense and be more useful to our readers. Our intention had also been to publish this report in time for the Security Council’s open debate on protection of civilians in May. But unfortunately this became impossible when the date of the debate was moved forward at the last minute. The result of this change in timing is that the present report covers less ground than our previous ones on this issue, although the statistical analysis still covers one full calendar year. In the future, we will be publishing a report every 12 months. Our next cross-cutting report on protection of civilians can therefore be expected in the first half of 2012.
Abstract: I consider it a singular honour to have been invited today by Chatham House
to address this august forum. The Economic Community of West African
States (ECOWAS), which I represent, is a regional organisation which has,
over the years, gained your attention only for the unfortunate reasons of state
implosion and instability caused by bad governance and marginalisation. I
therefore welcome the opportunity to throw further light on its objectives,
challenges, and achievements, which factors have effectively brought
together fifteen West African states in the enterprise of improving upon the
living standards of 230 million people as well as integrating them.
The term ‘Chatham House Rule’ is today an internationally-accepted cliché
that this Institute has contributed to international diplomacy discourse, a
reference norm in rigorous and policy-oriented exchanges on global peace
and security. I therefore view your invitation to lead today’s discourse about
‘Democracy in the context of Regional Integration in West Africa’ as an
unique honour for me personally, and a recognition of ECOWAS as a leading
brand in regional integration.
Ladies and gentlemen, the evolution of ECOWAS can only be properly
understood against the backdrop of the fascinating history and circumstances
of West Africa since establishing contact with the world beyond its borders.
The fact that slavery, colonialism, as well as racial and economic
marginalisation, had left an intrinsic yearning for freedom, unity and solidarity
among peoples of African descent everywhere defines its wish to integrate its
states and peoples.
Abstract: Following the arrest of Laurent Gbagbo, the former President of Côte d’Ivoire, on 11 April
2011, dozens of individuals have been arrested and are detained arbitrarily, without charge
or trial, in circumstances that contravene international fair trial standards.
An Amnesty International delegation that has just come back from a two week visit in Côte
d’Ivoire has interviewed on 15 June 2011 20 of 38 individuals who were held under a
restrictive form of house arrest at the Hotel Nouvelle Pergola (the Pergola) in Abidjan for
some two months. On 18 June 2011, 17 of them were released without charge. In the north
of the country, Laurent Gbagbo, his wife Simone Gbagbo, and Pascal Affi N’guessan, the
president of Laurent Gbagbo’s political party, the Ivoirian Popular Front (FPI), are being held
under house arrest in detention centres in Korhogo, Odienné and Bouna, respectively. A
number of military and police personnel are also being held in a military camp Korhogo, in
conditions that may be life-threatening. Unfortunately, despite several requests, the
organization was not given permission to visit individuals imprisoned or subject to house
arrest in Korhogo, Odienné and Bouna.
On 16 June 2011 Amnesty International has been able to discuss these cases in meetings
with the Minister of Justice, the Attorney General (Procureur de la République) and with
Young Jin Choi, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Côte
d’Ivoire and officials of the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) at their
headquarters in Abidjan. Amnesty International remains concerned, however, that the
detentions do not meet international fair trial standards.
Abstract: In his books The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries
Are Failing and What Can Be Done about It and Wars, Guns, and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places (cited henceforth
as BB and WGV, respectively), Paul Collier attempts to
bring African and other poor countries with problems of
“stuck” development back into the conversation of economists,
policymakers, and an educated nonspecialist readership. Book cover testimonials from The Economist, Larry
Summers, Larry Diamond, and New York Times columnist
Nicholas Krist of give a sense of the readership Collier
has targeted. Using analysis based on econometric studies
he has conducted with his research colleagues at Oxford
and the World Bank, he first tries to make sense of the
world’s “basket cases,” and then to propose policy interventions
that may help them to set themselves right.
Abstract: The level of women’s participation in armed violence in Africa is determined by the nature and
typology of conflict. Using prior research as a data source, the article examines the nature of
women’s participation in on-going and recently-concluded armed conflicts in 15 countries in Africa.
Based upon data that show variations, and similarities in the contextual conditions under which
women become war participants, this article presents three kinds of wars, and the conditions that
distinguish them from one another, as a theoretical framework in analysing women’s involvement in
Africa’s armed conflicts. The findings show that in ‘resources/opportunistic’ driven wars, women’s
participation is higher and more complex when compared to ‘ethno-religious’ and
‘secessionist/autonomy’ driven wars. Moreover, this paper finds that women’s participation can be
active and passive; coerced and voluntary.
Abstract: A new IPI report identifies the security sector in Côte d’Ivoire as a root of a decade of crises there and discusses how comprehensive security-sector reform is a key to preventing a return to armed conflict in the future.
The report provides a historical perspective as to how the Defense and Security Forces in Côte d’Ivoire were at the root of the 2002 crisis, why successive peace accords failed to produce security sector reform, and how the failure to reunify the Ivoirian security forces prior to holding the 2010 presidential election was a key factor behind the recent crisis and contributed to its escalation into a military confrontation.
The report also includes recommendations on how to focus reform on changing the relationship among politicians, security institutions, and the larger population, as part of a broader reconciliation process among Ivoirians themselves.
Abstract: The violence that followed the disputed presidential election in November 2010 has caused
the most serious humanitarian and human rights crisis in Côte d'Ivoire since the de facto
partition of the country in September 2002. Hundreds of people have been unlawfully killed,
often only on the grounds of their ethnicity or presumed political affiliation. Women and
adolescents have been victims of sexual violence, including rape, and hundreds of thousands
of people were forced to flee their homes to seek refuge in other regions of Côte d'Ivoire or in
neighbouring countries, especially Liberia.
Human rights violations and abuses continued to be committed after the arrest of the former
president, Laurent Gbagbo, on 11 April 2011. In Abidjan, a manhunt was launched against
real or perceived supporters of the former president and several senior officials very close to
the former president were beaten and ill-treated in the hours following their arrest. In the
west of the country, thousands of people fled their homes and, by the time the document was
finalized (i.e. 17 May 2011), many were still living in the forest for fear of returning to their
homes. These people, belonging to ethnic groups considered to be supporters of Laurent
Gbagbo, have been left to their own devices and have little or no protection from either the
Forces républicaines de Côte d’Ivoire (FRCI, Republican forces of Côte d'Ivoire), created on 8
March 2011, by President Alassane Ouattara, or the peacekeeping forces of the United
Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI). In some cases, people who tried to return home
were victims of violence and noted at times that their homes were occupied by others.
This report is based on research carried out in Côte d'Ivoire for more than two months
between January and April 2011 both in Abidjan and some parts of the west of the country.
The conclusions in this report clearly show that all parties to the conflict have committed
crimes under international law, including war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Abstract: This special research report provides an analysis of a set of new issues that have been emerging in the West African subregion and possible implications for the Security Council in the coming year(s). It identifies some key emerging threats to peace and security in the 16-state subregion and their linkages to existing security challenges. The report points to a key feature: the fact that some of the new threats are essentially criminal rather than political in nature. However, it explains also the growing political and security implications. The report also highlights action already taken by the Council to recognise these threats and considers options available to the Council to tackle these issues going forward.
The raw material for the study was derived from literature research; field research in a number of countries in the West African subregion (including Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Senegal, Ghana and Nigeria); and interviews in the region with diplomats, government officials and officials of relevant international intergovernmental bodies (e.g. UN Office in West Africa or UNOWA, UN Office for Drugs and Crime or UNODC, the Economic Community of West African States or ECOWAS and the AU), NGOs and academics.
Abstract: The popular uprisings that swept the Arab world in early 2011 have been compared by some commentators to the fall of the Berlin Wall. In an exhilarating push for democratic change, long-term rulers have been ousted and others challenged seriously for the first time. But despite what has been achieved, many voices from the region have urged caution: even in those countries which have seen the greatest changes, the internal security apparatus and other structures of repression have remained largely intact and the struggle for real constitutional reform continues. The ability of a state to undergo political change without violence is widely considered a hallmark of a mature democracy (although the record shows that democracies, even very old ones, are hardly immune from violent conflict). Which combination of circumstances, then, makes the onset of mass killing more likely and which conditions lower the risk of a state, even an autocratic one, descending to bloody violence? It is to help answer such questions that Minority Rights Group International has developed the Peoples under Threat index. Since 2005 Peoples under Threat has pioneered the use of statistical analysis to identify situations around the world where communities are most at risk of mass killing. On numerous occasions since the index was first developed, countries that have risen sharply up the table have later proved to be the scene of mass human rights violations.
Abstract: Since 29th November 2010, UNHCR, in collaboration with partners, has individually registered 45,178 Ivorian refugees in UNHCR's proGres database. Meanwhile, in response to a mass-influx of refugees into Liberia, an additional 112,800 refugees have been registered through rapid-response emergency registration. The rapid-response registration figures are currently undergoing a verification process and are gradually being consolidated into UNHCRs proGres database, thereby being reflected as indivdually registered refugees.
Abstract: With the immediate security crisis in Côte d’Ivoire now less pressing there is a growing sense that the Council and the wider UN need to be active to ensure that Côte d’Ivoire does not disappear from focus. The enormous peacebuilding needs in the country are an issue, as is the capacity and mandate of UNOCI to cope with these needs in the current phase of the peace consolidation process in Côte d’Ivoire. The month of April witnessed a serious escalation in the scale of violence in Abidjan when pro-Ouattara forces (also known as the Republican Forces of Côte d'Ivoire) engaged in heavy military clashes with pro-Gbagbo forces. A series of aerial assaults by UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) and French forces took place on 4 and 5 April and again on 10 April targeting heavy weaponry at Gbagbo’s residence. (The heavy weapons, according to UN sources, were used to target civilians.) Former President Gbagbo’s grip on power finally unraveled on 11 April when forces backing internationally-recognised President Ouattara subsequently breached the defences of his residence and captured him, his wife and some members of his family and staff. The humanitarian situation deteriorated dramatically and at one point it seemed as if a full scale civil war had reignited. At press time it was estimated that about 1,500 people had been killed in the violence since the November 2010 elections and about a million displaced, with emerging reports of sexual violence, summary executions and direct shelling of civilians. Reprisal attacks and incidents of armed resistance were also being reported. Both sides were implicated in attacks against civilians.
Abstract: This tropical West African nation, once the most prosperous in the region, is sliding even deeper into civil war. At press time, after a weeklong street battle for Abidjan, the commercial capital of 5 million, there were reports of a fragile settlement. But the vicious violence could break out again at any time. Mainstream Western press accounts included depressingly familiar explanations: the stolen presidential election in November, rising ethnic conflict. The explanations were accurate, as far as they went.
At first glance, this humid eastern zone, thick with tropical forest, may seem like a frontier, on the fringes of the modern world. In fact, Côte d’Ivoire is the world’s largest producer of cocoa beans. Giant global industries are based on cocoa; any chocolate bar sold in the United States is likely to include products from here. What looks like forest turns out to be mixed plantations carved out by hard-working small growers using axes and hand tools, who have to wait patiently, living off their other subsistence crops like bananas and manioc, for three to five years until the cocoa trees bear their first golden pods.
Abstract: Côte d’Ivoire has entered a renewed period of extreme political instability, accompanied by
significant political violence, following a contested presidential election designed to cap an often
forestalled peace process. The election was held under the terms of the 2007 Ouagadougou
Political Agreement, the most recent in a series of partially implemented peace accords aimed at
reunifying Côte d’Ivoire, which has remained largely divided between a government-controlled
southern region and a rebel-controlled zone in the north since the outbreak of a civil war in 2002.
Extensive recent fighting in the west, Abidjan, and in a growing number of other areas, among
diverse other indicators, suggest that a new Ivoirian civil war is now under way.
These developments directly threaten long-standing U.S. and international efforts to support a
transition to peace, political stability, and democratic governance in Côte d’Ivoire, among other
U.S. objectives. Indirectly at stake are broader, long-term U.S. efforts to ensure regional stability,
peace, democratic and accountable governance, and economic growth in West Africa, along with
billions of dollars of U.S. foreign aid to achieve these ends. The United States has supported the
Ivoirian peace process since the 2002 war, both diplomatically and financially, with funding
appropriated by Congress. It supports the ongoing U.N. Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI);
funded a UNOCI predecessor, the U.N. Mission in Côte d’Ivoire; and assisted in the deployment
in 2003 of a now defunct Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) military
intervention force. The 112th Congress may be asked to consider additional funding for UNOCI;
U.S. support for a potential ECOWAS military intervention force; or funding for emergency
humanitarian aid in response to the deteriorating political-military situation.
Abstract: The post-election violence in La Cote d’Ivoire has
intensified since late March 2011 to an extent that
one can describe it as a civil war. Limited success
by the international community in convincing the
parties to the conflict of the utility of negotiations
reflects a clear indication of the failure of
international efforts. This brief report examines these failures and provides recommendations for the protection of civilians.
Abstract: It was recently discovered that as many as 1,000 people in Duekoue, Cote d’Ivoire, were killed between March 27–29. It is unclear who is responsible for the killings. The U.N. claims that forces loyal to former President Laurent Gbagbo – who lost the recent election but has refused to leave office, sparking the current conflict – are responsible. However, the area where the killings occurred was controlled at the time by fighters loyal to President Alassane Ouattara.
This Heritage Foundation Report assess the role of U.N. peacekeepers in Cote d’Ivoire including its mandate to protect the civilian population and recommendations for future U.N. peacekeeping operations.
Author Brett Schaefer states, “this terrible incident raises echoes of former instances in which U.N. peacekeepers seemingly were in a position to stop an atrocity but failed. It also demonstrates that the U.N., despite a long-term presence, has failed to resolve the issues that provoked conflict in the country a decade ago. This should teach the U.S. to be more vigilant in assessing whether U.N. operations are achieving their objectives before approving or reauthorizing them.”
Abstract: Violence continues after the 28 November 2010
Presidential run-off elections after which the
winner, opposition leader Alassane Ouattara,
has been prevented from taking office by the
incumbent president, Laurent Gbagbo. For the
past four months, international efforts, largely
by the Economic Community of West Africa
States (ECOWAS), the African Union (AU) and
the United Nations (UN), have failed to
persuade Gbagbo to cede power to his rival
Ouattara. Recent efforts by the African Union
(AU) has only led to a decision by the AU’s Peace
and Security Council (PSC) to meet ‘in two
weeks’ to start negotiations between the two
Ivorian political rivals ‘to develop modalities for
the implementation of the proposals’ by a panel
of five African presidents. Details of the
proposals made by the panel of five are yet to be
made public, though the AU at a meeting in Addis
Ababa, Ethiopia formally recognised Ouattara as
President of La Côte d’Ivoire.
While the AU is bidding time to act, there is a
growing humanitarian crisis that continues to
define the post-election stand-off. Recently, the
UN estimates that over 400,000 people are on
the move: 200,000 displaced from Abidjan
alone, and 90,000 having already crossed into
Liberia and Guinea. 5,000 have since mid-
March crossed into Ghana. The death toll on
civilians caught in-between the fighting forces
also continues to increase on a daily basis. So far
the UN reports that about 425 people have been
Abstract: Les élections présidentielles du 28 novembre 2010
en Côte d’Ivoire ont plongé le pays dans une crise
politique dont l’issue demeure à ce jour incertaine.
Suite à l’invalidation par le Conseil constitutionnel des
résultats de la Commission électorale indépendante,
laquelle avait proclamé le 2 décembre 2010 la victoire
de M. Alassane Ouattara, le pays s’est retrouvé avec
deux présidents à sa tête. Cet imbroglio politico-institutionnel
– M. Laurent Gbagbo se prévalant de la
légalité institutionnelle pour justifier son coup d’État
– et le refus du président sortant de céder le pouvoir
menacent le processus de paix enclenché depuis les
accords de Ouagadougou de 2007. Les épisodes récents
de violence ont, d’après le dernier bilan du Haut
Commissariat aux Droits de l’Homme des Nations
unies, fait plus de 370 morts, pour la plupart partisans
de M. Ouattara. Près de quatre mois se sont écoulés
depuis la tenue des élections, mais aucune solution
immédiate de sortie de crise ne semble se dessiner.
Abstract: As Gbagbo continues to resist international pressure
for him to step down, targeted sanctions have been
instituted by the international community against
him and his government. The strongest warning for
Gbagbo to step down has come from ECOWAS which
has threatened military intervention, should
persuasion fail. Yet, there are no indications that
Gbagbo will bow down to pressure or persuasion.
With the hardening of positions from both sides,
continuing tensions, escalating violent rhetoric and
accusations of both parties and the real possibility of
a renewed civil war in La Côte d’Ivoire, what options
are available to pull the country out of the brink of
war? Is the use of ‘legitimate force’ a viable option?
Are there potentials for negotiated settlement?
This paper discusses the political deadlock in La
Côte d’Ivoire, cautions against the use of force, and
calls on the international community to explore
options for negotiated settlement. It argues that the
use of force in the Ivorian situation will be a zerosum
game in which the civilian populations of the
country who will suffer. On the contrary, a
negotiated settlement presents the best opportunity
for a win-win situation in which the Ivorian
population can be protected.
We argue that ECOWAS’s ‘threat’ or ‘actual’ use of
force can complicate the Ivorian crisis for several
reasons discussed below.
Abstract: The three-month campaign of organized violence by security forces under the control of Laurent Gbagbo and militias that support him gives every indication of amounting to crimes against humanity, Human Rights Watch said today. A new Human Rights Watch investigation in Abidjan indicates that the pro-Gbagbo forces are increasingly targeting immigrants from neighboring West African countries in their relentless attacks against real and perceived supporters of Alassane Ouattara, who is internationally recognized as having won the November 2010 presidential election.
The crisis has escalated since the end of February 2011, with clashes between armed forces loyal to Gbagbo and Ouattara in the western and central regions of the country, as well as in Abidjan, the financial capital. Armed combatants have committed war crimes, including executions of detainees and targeted killings of civilians and destruction of their property, Human Rights Watch said. The killing of civilians by pro-Ouattara forces, at times with apparent ethnic or political motivation, also risks becoming crimes against humanity should they become widespread or systematic. No one has been held accountable for the attacks, which have left hundreds dead, and neither side has even publicly denounced abuses by its own forces.
Abstract: La Côte d’Ivoire est au bord d’une nouvelle guerre civile
opposant les forces fidèles au président sortant Laurent
Gbagbo qui refuse de reconnaître sa défaite électorale lors
du scrutin du 28 novembre 2010 et les combattants de
l’ex-rébellion des Forces nouvelles (FN) qui soutiennent
désormais le vainqueur de l’élection, Alassane Ouattara.
Ce scrutin devait mettre fin à huit années de crise, mais
Gbagbo a perpétré un coup d’Etat constitutionnel accompagné
d’une campagne de violences pour s’accrocher au
pouvoir. La situation ainsi créée est une menace grave
pour la paix, la sécurité et la stabilité dans toute l’Afrique
de l’Ouest. Le soutien dont Gbagbo bénéficie auprès
d’une partie de la population soumise à une effrayante
propagande ultranationaliste et le chantage au chaos auquel
s’adonne une minorité agissante et organisée ne doivent
pas influencer la communauté africaine. Alors que
l’Afrique doit agir de manière décisive, y compris pour
défendre fermement le principe des élections démocratiques,
des pays importants du continent adoptent des
positions qui favorisent une dangereuse désunion. Toute
proposition qui maintiendrait Gbagbo à la présidence,
même de manière temporaire, serait une erreur. Son départ
est nécessaire pour éviter la reprise de la guerre.
Abstract: Popular revolt continued to convulse the Arab world in February. The rapid spread and escalation of unrest underlined the magnitude of events, but their pace makes the direction of change uncertain.
After almost three weeks of massive protests Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak stepped down on 11 February. The Supreme Military Council took control and promised presidential and parliamentary elections within six months. On 22 February a new civilian cabinet was sworn in.
Just days after Mubarak's downfall protests broke out in Libya against Muammar Qaddafi's four-decade rule. Hundreds of civilians were feared killed and thousands injured as Qaddafi launched a brutal crackdown, prompting senior members of the regime and military to defect. By the end of the month Libya was in the throes of a full-scale rebellion, with large parts of the country under opposition control. The UN Security Council unanimously voted to impose sanctions and refer Libya to the International Criminal Court.
Protests intensified in Yemen, where dozens were killed in daily clashes between protesters and security forces from the middle of the month. Demonstrations for political reform in Bahrain also saw several protesters killed by security forces. Following international condemnation of the crackdown Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad al-Khalifa ordered the withdrawal of security forces and offered dialogue with the opposition. In Afghanistan, the standoff continued between President Hamid Karzai and the opposition over the flawed September parliamentary election. A controversial special tribunal set up by Karzai - which the opposition condemns as unconstitutional - has started recounting votes in several provinces. Three Muscovite tourists were killed in a guerrilla attack on a North Caucasus ski resort, one of several attacks in the region's Kabardino-Balkaria Republic. The attack underlined the degree to which the previously relatively peaceful republic has become a target of Islamic guerrilla activity.
Conflict in Somalia escalated as government troops backed by AU peacekeepers battled against Islamic militant al-Shabaab in Mogadishu, and Ethiopian troops were reportedly involved in border clashes. In Somaliland, tensions increased in oil-rich Sool, Sanaag and Cayn region as government forces fought with rebel militia.
The collapse of a six-year ceasefire led to heightened tensions in Côte d'Ivoire and further warnings of an outbreak of civil war. The situation in Thailand also deteriorated as hostilities broke out along the border with Cambodia in the disputed area near Preah Vihear temple. Compromised elections in Uganda saw President Yoweri Museveni win a fourth term.