Κυριακή, 10 Απριλίου 2011

French helicopters have fired rockets on the residence of Laurent Gbagbo,

United Nations and French helicopters have fired rockets on the residence of Laurent Gbagbo, Cote d'Ivoire's incumbent president, in Abidjan.
Για άλλη μια φορά ο ΟΗΕ και οι Γάλοι πέρνουν μέρος σε έναν εμφύλιο προκειμένου να εξασφαλίσουν τα συμφέροντα τους  
11-4-2011 Cote d'Ivoire's Laurent Gbagbo has surrendered to the forces of presidential claimant Alassane Ouattara and is being held by them, the United Nations has said."The United Nations mission in Cote d'Ivoire has confirmed that former President Laurent Gbagbo has surrendered to the forces of Alassane Ouattara and is currently in their custody," UN spokesman Farhan Haq said on Monday.

Haru Mutasa, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Abidjan, confirmed that five helicopters were used in the attack, and that they flew from a French airbase. After flying to the Cocody area, where the presidential palace is located, they fired their rockets and then returned to the airbase to reload. The process was then repeated.Two residents from nearby neighborhoods reported seeing two UN Mi-24 attack helicopters and a French helicopter open fire on the residence on Sunday, the Associated Press news agency reported.One resident reported seeing smoke rise from the compound. An AP reporter saw the same three helicopters take off from the French military base minutes before the reporter heard explosions coming from the direction of the residence.A UN spokesman told the Reuters news agency that the helicopters were attempting to "neutralise Gbagbo heavy weapons".

[.. Mosst people here are ignorant of situation of things in Cote D voire. the international community has no recognition for the sovereignty of African countries. Could you imagine Nigerian supreme court declaring Mr A winner in an election, and yet somebody in New York said  he only recognised Mr. B. The body that declared Gbagbo winner is the highest ruling court in Cote D'voire, the equivalent of supreme court in Nigeria. Now the issue is not whether Quattara won or not, it is about respecting intitutions in the society, that is part of democracy, when US supreme court declared Bush  winner in a world renown rigged election yet Agore did not take up arms nor did international community who are resident in New York complained. How come it was easy for them to disregard the highest court of Cote D'voire to proclaim Gbagbo the winner? 

How many Governors do we have in Nigeria today who came to office by the instrumentality of the Court? Ameachi did not even contested at the polls, yet he came to office by technical instrument of law, what of how Uba was removed, what of Aregbesola in Osun, Adam Oshiomole among others. The question is why did Quattara not avail himself of  civil means of seeking redress in court? Perhaps he would have done that if the so called International community did not over stepped their boundary and undermined institutional process of Cote D'voire by proclaiming Quattara winner,  did Buhari not go to court against OBJ, even against Yar Adua? why can't this issue be resolved constitutionally, now that the rebels have brought in to power, they will soon tell him their terms which in no time will end the party, they will soon tell him he did not come to office on popular mandate, rather by the barrel of the guns, they will tell him how they help him rigged election up North, and with they same gun, he will be chased out of power..

"We are pursuing our operation to neutralise Gbagbo heavy weapons. We had to stop the operation for a couple of days to evaluate and have realised that there are still some heavy weapons that they had used against civilians and the UN," Hamadoun Toure, the spokesman, said.
Speaking to Al Jazeera, Toure said that the UN was acting within the mandate of UN Resolution 1975, which allows the UN to take action if there was an "imminent threat" to civilians. He said that UN helicopters were only targetting heavy weapons sites, and were not looking to target Gbagbo himself.
"We are not trying to take control of his residence ... Our objective is not to capture anybody," Toure said.
Toure said that with the "use of heavy arms against the civilian population and peacekeepers" continuing, "there was a need to react to protect the civilian population in conformity with our mandate".
Al Jazeera's Mutasa said that heavy shelling and gunfire rang out through the evening on Sunday, with plumes of smoke visible from the direction of Gbagbo's residence.
Toussaint Alain, a Gbagbo adviser who resides in France, confirmed the attack, while Ahoua Don Mello, a Gbagbo spokesman, said that the residence had been "partially destroyed".
Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary-general, meanwhile, has ordered UN peacekeepers in Cote d'Ivoire to use "all necessary means" to stop Gbagbo's heavy weapons.
"The continued use of heavy weapons against the civilian population and our peacekeepers, as well as the attack against the Headquarters of the legitimate Government, have compelled me, once again, to instruct UNOCI to use all necessary means to prevent the use of these weapons, pursuant to Security Council
resolutions 1975 (2011) and 1962 (2010)," Ban said in a statement.

Fighting near military base
Mutasa also reported that fighting was under way near the Agban military base on Sunday.
"We're hearing from people who live there that the fighting is ongoing, it's been on and off for the past few hours," she reported.
"The residents who are closest to that base say some of them have fled and they are hiding in a nearby market until the fighting has died down. People seem very, very afraid."
Sunday's violence comes after forces loyal to Gbagbo fired on Alassane Outtara, the president-elect's hotel headquarters, located elsewhere in the city on Saturday.

Three decades after independence under the leadership of its first president, Felix Houphouet-Boigny, Cote d'Ivoire was hailed for its religious and ethnic harmony and its well-developed economy. However, the country has since been plagued by internal religious and ethnic tension.
Despite government attempts to diversify the economy, it is still heavily dependent on agriculture and related activities, engaging roughly 68 per cent of the population.

Since 2006, oil and gas production have become more important engines of economic activity than cocoa.

Cote d'Ivoire's first president, Felix Houphouet-Boigny ruled the country for 33 years. During his rule, the country witnessed religious and ethnic harmony until his successor Henri Bedie was toppled by a coup led by Robert Guei in 1999.

Bedie fled the country, leaving behind a legacy of increased xenophobia against Muslim northerners. The same tactics were implemented by Guei, who had his political rival Alassane Ouattara banned from the presidential election in 2000 because of his foreign background.

Robert Guei was deposed in 2000 in a violent uprising that saw Laurent Gbagbo come into power. Many of Ouattara's supporters were killed after their leader called for new elections.

Political turmoil continues to damage the country's economy, resulting in the loss of foreign investment and slow economic growth.

Cote d'Ivoire has since been plagued by ethnic and religious tension that has left the nation tense and divided.
Independence: August 7, 1960 (from France)
Geography: West Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Ghana and Liberia.
Population: 21,058,798
Median age: 19.4 years
Birth rate: 31.48 births/1,000 population (2010 est.)
Death rate: 10.43 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: 56.19 years
Ethnic groups: Akan 42.1 per cent, Voltaiques/Gur 17.6 per cent, Northern Mandes 16.5 per cent, Krous 11 per cent, Southern Mandes 10 per cent , other 2.8 per cent - includes 130,000 Lebanese and 14,000 French (1998)

 Muslim 38.6 per cent, Christian 32.8 per cent, indigenous 11.9 per cent, none 16.7 per cent (2008 est.)

 French (official), 60 native dialects with Dioula the most widely spoken
Industries: foodstuffs, beverages, wood products, oil refining, truck/bus assembly, textiles, fertiliser, building materials, electricity, ship construction and repair
Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, diamonds, manganese, iron ore, cobalt, bauxite, copper, gold, nickel, tantalum, silica sand, clay, cocoa beans, coffee, palm oil, hydropower.
GDP: $23.18 billion (2009 est.)
GDP/capita: $1,700 (2009 est.)
Unemployment: Approaching 40-50% as a result of the civil war
Population below poverty line: 42 per cent (2006 est.)
Exchange rate: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 469.21 (2009).

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