Annan holds West African mini-summit over Côte d'Ivoire deadlock
West African leaders at a meeting convened by United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan have decided to bring the parties in Côte d'Ivoire together later this month in a bid to break the impasse in that country, a UN spokesperson reported today.
Leaders of nine West African States holding talks last night in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, voiced concern about the stalemate in Côte d'Ivoire, spokesperson Marie Okabe said.
Speaking to reporters after the mini-summit, the Secretary-General said preparations would be made so that the 29 July meeting in Accra, Ghana, "will be concrete, constructive and we should be able to leave…with sure and real achievements."
The Security Council has authorized a peacekeeping operation for Côte d'Ivoire with nearly 7,000 UN personnel to monitor the country's comprehensive ceasefire agreement.
A Security Council delegation visiting the West African country last month asked President Laurent Gbagbo and Prime Minister Seydou Elimane Diarra why national reconciliation was running into obstacles.
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has established an Independent Commission of Inquiry to investigate claims of serious human rights violations between mid-September 2002 and the signing of the Linas-Marcoussis peace agreement in January 2003.
An earlier report on alleged atrocities committed during demonstrations in the major city, Abidjan, and the capital, Yamoussoukro, was issued late last March.