Insights on Côte d’Ivoire
Tomorrow (Friday, 25 March) the Council will be briefed by DPKO on the situation in Côte d’Ivoire. Ambassador Yossoufou Bamba, the Ouattara government’s representative to the U.N. will also be present. (A DPKO briefing note circulated to Council members on 17th March confirmed that the UN investigation of the mortar attack by Laurent Gbagbo’s forces on 17 March on a market place in Abidjan killed some 20-30 people and injured some 40-60 more supporters of President Outtara.)
Following the briefing Council members will have informal consultations on Côte d’Ivoire during which Nigeria, who is also the chair of ECOWAS, is expected to bring up ECOWAS’ request for stronger Council action on Côte d’Ivoire and to push for a robust decision from the Council.
On Thursday, 24 March, ECOWAS in its statement following its meeting of Heads of State and Government in Abuja requested the Council to “strengthen the mandate of the UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI), enabling the mission to use all necessary means to protect life and property, and to facilitate the immediate transfer of power to Alassane Outtara”. It also requested the Council to adopt more stringent international targeted sanctions against Laurent Gbagbo and his associates.