Security Council team in Côte dIvoire urges steps towards reconciliation

In Côte d’Ivoire’s major city, Abidjan, French Ambassador Jean-Marc de La Sablière said the 14-member delegation had raised questions about the impediments to reconciliation during meetings with President Laurent Gbagbo and with Prime Minister Seydou Elimane Diarra.The UN has set up an Independent Commission of Inquiry for Côte d’Ivoire to investigate allegations of serious human rights violations between mid-September 2002 and the signing of Linas-Marcoussis in January 2003. It has also received a report on alleged atrocities committed during demonstrations in Abidjan and the capital, Yamoussoukro, in late March of this year.The Security Council expects all the Ivorian parties to carry out the responsibilities they have pledged to shoulder, the French Permanent Representative to the UN said. “The goal is shared by all and by the President: free, open and transparent elections should take place in October 2005 and Linas-Marcoussis is the means by which the goal of these elections can be reached.”The UN has fulfilled its pledges with respect to Côte d’Ivoire, he said. “It is now important that the different Ivorian parties fulfil theirs,” he said.All members of the Council except the Russian Federation are taking part in the West African fact-finding mission. The team is scheduled to travel next to Liberia. read more