Cote d’Ivoire Crisis

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  • by Anup Shah
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  1. Introduction
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Following elections in Cote d’Ivoire in October 2010, both President Laurent Gbagbo and opposition candidate, Alassane Ouattara, claimed victory. International observers agreed that the Ouattara had won, but Gbagbo refused to accept this.

Negotiations failed and while the world’s attention was elsewhere, the situation became volatile and violent outbursts turned into the country’s second civil war. Forces supporting Ouattara have swept through the country and Gbagbo’s position looks precarious while he remains defiant.

Displaced Ivorians queue for food at a UNHCR distribution site in Liberia (source)

At the same time, possibly a million people are thought to have fled their homes, about 100,000 of which have crossed over into neighboring Liberia.

Thousands of civilians have been killed in what observers have found to be mass human rights violations. There have also been reports of massacres and mass graves. UN personnel on the ground have been targeted. There are accusations of violence by both sides.

This situation had been brewing for a long time, and yet, the international community has been comparatively silent compared to how they have reacted to the situation in Libya.

This page presents news coverage from Inter Press Service on this crisis.

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More information

There are so many issues that this tragic event has caused that I can’t cover them on my own. However, below are a list of stories from Inter Press Service as they cover this event and its aftermath:

  1. Côte d’Ivoire Chokes on its Plastic Shopping Bags

    ABDIJAN, Côte d’Ivoire, Sep 26 (IPS) - In the middle of downtown Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, the aisles of a thriving supermarket are full of customers. But as they line up to pay for their items, there is one line to a cashier's till that remains empty. It's the "green cash register", where the cashier does not provide plastic bags as this supermarket tries to implement a green policy. 

  2. Côte d’Ivoire Rides the Fast Track to Public Transport Development

    ABDIJAN, Côte d’Ivoire, Jun 04 (IPS) - Two years ago, it would have taken Catherine Adjoua almost an hour to travel from M'Badon, the isolated fishing area where she lives that has no asphalt roads, to reach her workplace some 13 kilometres away in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire's economic capital.

  3. Local Militias Hold Sway in Cote d'Ivoire's Lawless Duékoué

    DUÉKOUÉ, Dic 22 (IPS) - In Cote d'Ivoire, traditional hunters known as dozos are accused of human rights abuses and extortion. But in several areas, they also remain the sole guarantor of local safety.

  4. Côte d’Ivoire Poised at a Development Crossroad

    ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire, Nov 18 (IPS) - All over the Ivorian economic capital, Abidjan, large cranes, involved in the construction of new buildings and highways, are dotted across the city skyline.

  5. A Shortage of ARVs and a Surplus of Stigma in Côte d’Ivoire

    ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire, Nov 08 (IPS) - At the Cocody-Anono community health centre, south-east of the Ivorian economic capital of Abidjan, Bertine Bahi* regularly attends awareness sessions on Preventing Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT) for women living with HIV.

  6. Saving Côte d’Ivoire’s Fragile Forests and People

    DIX-HUIT MONTAGNES REGION, Côte d’Ivoire, Jul 09 (IPS) - As the Côte d'Ivoire government clears its protected forests of illegal occupiers, particularly in the Dix-Huit Montagnes region, environmentalists say that this crucial move might lead to conflict in an already tense region.

  7. Victor’s Justice Plays Out in Côte d’Ivoire

    ABIDJAN, Feb 08 (IPS) - The extradition of high-level allies of former Côte d'Ivoire President Laurent Gbagbo from Ghana back to their home country, including a most recent one on Feb. 5, has brought renewed scrutiny to the Ivorian judiciary, which critics say is implementing a form of one-sided victor's justice since the 2010 to 2011 post-election conflict.

  8. Some Côte d'Ivoire Women Don’t Want Joint Responsibility for Family

    ABIDJAN, Dic 14 (IPS) - After 17 years of women struggling for parity with men in the household, Côte d'Ivoire's legislature has finally adopted a law which establishes equal responsibility for legally married spouses. But not everyone is happy.

  9. Anti-gay Stigma Hinders Bid to Lower Côte d’Ivoire’s HIV Rate

    ABIDJAN, Dic 01 (IPS) - When Emmanuel Kokou, a 28-year-old sex worker, moved from his native Togo to Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire in 2010, he knew there was a good chance that he had previously been exposed to HIV. But he had no intention of getting tested.

  10. Côte d'Ivoire – New Cassava Varieties Bring Women Autonomy

    ABIDJAN, Sep 25 (IPS) - Women farmers in Côte d'Ivoire are achieving greater autonomy and economic independence thanks to new varieties of cassava.

  11. Reluctant Farewell to Arms in Côte d’Ivoire

    ABIDJAN, Sep 22 (IPS) - In his black boots and green fatigues – complete with arm patches bearing the name of the national army, Forces Republicaines de Côte d’Ivoire – Ousmane Kone looked every bit the soldier as he stood guard over an electricity and water distribution company one Tuesday afternoon in Abidjan.

  12. Côte d’Ivoire’s Universities - Shedding a Legacy of Violence and Corruption

    ABIDJAN, Sep 04 (IPS) - Yacouba Coulibaly was pursuing a doctorate in education at Cocody University in Abidjan before Côte d’Ivoire’s post-election violence started in 2010. But his classes were routinely disrupted by armed members of a powerful student federation that wished to hold meetings instead.

  13. Lean Times Get Leaner in Northern Cote d’Ivoire

    KORHOGO, Cote d’Ivoire, Aug 14 (IPS) - Salimata Coulibaly, director of a medical centre in the town of Korhogo in the northern Cote d’Ivoire region of Savanes, stood before a chart displaying before-and-after photos of local children – one taken when each child arrived at the centre, and one after he or she responded to treatment for malnutrition.

  14. Armed Forces Still Dictating Côte d'Ivoire’s Law

    ABIDJAN, Aug 13 (IPS) - Even as Côte d'Ivoire gradually recovers from the bloody events of the 2010-2011 post-electoral crisis, massacres in the western part of the country and the frequent sound of gunfire in the economic capital, Abidjan, are signs of the long road ahead.

  15. Punish Those Carrying Out FGM, Say Côte d'Ivoire Campaigners

    ABIDJAN, Jul 27 (IPS) - Nine women in the northern Côte d'Ivoire town of Katiola have been convicted for carrying out female genital mutilation – the first time that a 1998 law banning FGM has been applied.

  16. Côte d'Ivoire Law Offers Battered Women Little Protection

    ABIDJAN, Jul 19 (IPS) - A shiver ran down Habiba Kanaté's* spine when she read about a policeman shooting and killing his wife in Abidjan, the economic capital of Côte d'Ivoire. "That could have been me," she said.

  17. Helping Victims of Post-Election Crisis Obtain Justice in Côte d'Ivoire

    Thousands of people suffered rape, torture and other violence during the post- electoral crisis in Côte d'Ivoire beginning in December 2010. But many survivors of rights violations have been afraid to seek justice for fear of reprisals by the perpetrators. An initiative by the International Federation of Human Rights aims to support 75 such victims as they bring their cases to court.

  18. The Ticket to an Education in Côte d'Ivoire

    The births of tens of thousands of children during Côte d'Ivoire's eight-year rebellion were not formally recorded. Providing these children with birth certificates is one of the mundane yet vital challenges facing the authorities as they work to re-establish the country's public administration.

  19. The Lost Innocence of Cote d’Ivoire’s Children

    At first sight the group of children playing in a shaded courtyard in Cote d’Ivoire’s economic capital Abidjan seem carefree. But when a defunct car exhaust blasts, they tremble. When a soldier walks past, they shudder. And they become anxious when an unknown adult approaches them.

  20. Men Still Make the Decisions on Reproductive Rights in Cote d’Ivoire

    'I would like to use contraception, but my husband is against it,' says Bintou Moussa*. The 32-year-old mother has just given birth to her sixth child at the Abobo General Hospital in Cote d’Ivoire’s commercial capital Abidjan.

  21. COTE D’IVOIRE: Illicit Timber Trade Exposes the North to Drought

    Environmental groups in Côte d'Ivoire say the illegal logging and sale of wood from the African gum tree is exposing the north of the country to the encroaching desert. The NGOs are calling on the authorities to take firmer action against the illicit timber traders — who allegedly include government officials.

  22. LIBERIA: 'Security Risk' at Ivory Coast Border Ahead of Elections

    As Liberia gears up for Tuesday’s presidential and legislative elections, officials stationed near the border with Ivory Coast have expressed concern that insufficient border security - a problem highlighted by two recent cross-border attacks - could fuel electoral violence.

  23. COTE D’IVOIRE: Suspended Exports Dent Scrap Metal Dealers' Prospects

    Between now and 2012, the Côte d'Ivoire government plans to establish a scrap metal processing industry that will supply finished products to domestic and regional markets. It is unwelcome news for the country's existing scrap dealers.

  24. COTE D'IVOIRE: Toxic Waste Victims Wait Years for Compensation

    Thousands of victims affected by toxic waste dumping in 2006 in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire's commercial capital, still have not received the economic compensation they were promised.

  25. COTE D’IVOIRE: Disagreement Over Scope of ICC Investigation

    Government and civil society in Côte d'Ivoire are divided over the scope of the investigations to be undertaken by the International Criminal Court into atrocities and serious violations of human rights committed during the post- electoral crisis.

  26. UNICEF Leads 'Back to School' Initiative in Cote d'Ivoire

    When the five-month-old political standoff in Cote d'Ivoire came to an end in early April, the strife-torn West African nation was expected to return to normal - later than sooner.

  27. COTE D'IVOIRE: Hesitant Steps Towards Normal Life

    The prime minister of Côte d'Ivoire, Guillaume Soro, held his first cabinet meeting away from the Golf Hotel on Tuesday. The meeting - at the Prime Minister's Office in the Plateau d'Abidjan - was symbolic, intended to signal a return to normal life in a city that endured heavy fighting between Mar. 30 and the fall of former president Laurent Gbagbo on Apr. 11.

  28. COTE D'IVOIRE: Hesitant Steps Towards Normal Life

    The prime minister of Côte d'Ivoire, Guillaume Soro, held his first cabinet meeting away from the Golf Hotel on Tuesday. The meeting - at the Prime Minister's Office in the Plateau d'Abidjan - was symbolic, intended to signal a return to normal life in a city that endured heavy fighting between Mar. 30 and the fall of former president Laurent Gbagbo on Apr. 11.

  29. COTE D'IVOIRE: Gbagbo Being Held by Ouattara Forces

    Cote d'Ivoire's Laurent Gbagbo has surrendered to the forces of presidential claimant Alassane Ouattara and is being held by them, the U.N. has said.

  30. Manufacturing Côte d'Ivoire's 'Good Guy'

    As Côte d'Ivoire's bloody leadership contest draws to a close and the surrender of Laurent Gbagbo, the incumbent president, seems imminent, a long list of atrocities and electoral irregularities mark the records of both him and his opponent, Alassane Ouattara.

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  • by Anup Shah
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