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Annan appeals to Security Council for funds to secure peace in Côte d'Ivoire

Annan appeals to Security Council for funds to secure peace in Côte d'Ivoire

Kofi Annan addresses Council
With important steps finally underway to secure durable peace in Côte d'Ivoire, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today appealed to the Security Council for the urgent, necessary financial and logistical support needed for the West African peacekeeping force to continue playing its essential role in promoting regional reconciliation.

Addressing the Security Council at the outset of its meeting on the situation in Côte d'Ivoire, Mr. Annan appealed to the 15-nation body, as well as the wider international community, to quickly provide the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) with the additional financial resources required to sustain its troops - ECOFORCE - for the next six months.

In order to complement the efforts launched by ECOWAS, the Secretary-General said he had also recommended the establishment of a small UN operation comprising military liaison components as well as human rights, civil affairs and media components. "I hope that Council members will shortly authorize this mission so that the United Nations can strengthen its role in the Ivoirian peace process," he said.

Mr. Annan praised the work already undertaken by ECOWAS as well as France and other countries and institutions helping the various Ivoirian factions grapple with the challenges of rebuilding their nation in the aftermath of sixth months of conflict.

The Secretary-General added that the high-level ECOWAS delegation attending the meeting, including the Foreign Ministers of Guinea, Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal, as well as Côte d'Ivoire, reflected how seriously West Africa considered the issue of replenishing ECOFORCE's depleted resources and ensuring its vital role in promoting peace and security in Côte d'Ivoire.

"At this critical time, when the various Ivoirian parties have at last begun taking important steps to implement the Linas-Marcoussis accord, ECOWAS has found it necessary to decide on a substantial increase in the size of ECOFORCE in order to make it more effective," he said.

The Secretary-General informed the Council that Albert Tévoedjré, his Special Representative for Côte d'Ivoire, was chairing the follow-up committee established under the Linas-Marcoussis accord. He added that he was pleased with the progress Prime Minister Seydou Diarra has made in establishing the new Government.