Côte d’Ivoire: Security Council welcomes inaugural meeting of new government

Côte d’Ivoire: Security Council welcomes inaugural meeting of new government

Amb. Mamady Traoré speaks to press
Welcoming the first meeting of the Government of National Reconciliation in Côte d’Ivoire, United Nations Security Council members today called on all the parties to participate in subsequent meetings.

At the same time, the President of the Council, Ambassador Mamady Traoré of Guinea, said in a press statement, that Council members recalled the importance of respect for human rights and international humanitarian law in Côte d’Ivoire and had expressed deep concern at the deplorable humanitarian situation there. They “called on all parties, in particular in the West, to allow relief agencies unimpeded access to civilian populations,” he said.

“Members of the Security Council condemned the renewal of fighting in the West of the country and the events that had transpired, in particular in Bangolo,” Ambassador Traoré said, adding that they expressed concern at the fact that the fighting had essentially opposed Liberian combatants. “They called on the parties to desist from the use of children in the conflict.”

Albert Tévoedjré, Special Representative of Secretary-General Kofi Annan for Côte d’Ivoire, briefed the Council earlier Friday on the volatile situation in that country and on the activities of the committee tasked with monitoring the implementation of the Linas-Marcoussis Agreement. Council Members “expressed their full support for the Special Representative and the Monitoring Committee,” Ambassador Traoré said.

He also said that Council members thanked the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which, under the chairmanship of Ghana, had played an important role in the convening of the inaugural meeting of the new Government. “They called again on all parties to implement fully and without delay the Linas-Marcoussis Agreement,” he said, adding that they called on the new Government to draw up a timetable for the implementation of the accord.

Council members were also briefed today on the recent assessment mission to Côte d’Ivoire carried out by UN Assistant- Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hédi Annabi. “They looked forward to receiving the report the Secretary-General would submit on the basis of Mr. Annabi’s conclusions as soon as possible,” the President added.

Also during the briefing, France informed the Council of the activities of its troops and members expressed their full support for the efforts of ECOWAS forces and French troops, as provided for by resolution 1464, with a view to finding a peaceful solution to the conflict “They called on Member States to provide adequate financial and logistical support for the ECOWAS forces,” Ambassador Traoré said. Members of Council noted with satisfaction the decision by ECOWAS to ensure the safety of all members of the new Government and stressed the need urgently to take all necessary steps to that end.