Security Council renews mandate of UN mission in Côte d’Ivoire ahead of polls

Security Council renews mandate of UN mission in Côte d’Ivoire ahead of polls

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The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) by another six months, stressing the importance that much delayed presidential elections now slated for November are conducted in a free, fair and transparent manner.

The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) by another six months, stressing the importance that much delayed presidential elections now slated for November are conducted in a free, fair and transparent manner.

In a resolution adopted unanimously, the Council renewed UNOCI’s mandate – and that of the French forces supporting it – through 31 January next year.

The 15-member panel asked the mission to provide logistical support to the national Independent Electoral Commission as it prepares to hold the first round of the presidential elections, set to take place on 30 November.

It also called on UNOCI to continue its support of the implementation of the Ouagadougou Agreement, the 2007 political accord reached in neighbouring Burkina Faso that aims to reconcile Côte d’Ivoire’s Government and the rebel Forces Nouvelles.

UNOCI has pledged to help in the identification process of voters ahead of the elections, which were originally supposed to have been held in 2005 in the West African country.

The resolution encourages the Forces Nouvelles and the national Defence and Security Force to develop a joint plan to ensure security at the elections, in consultation with the mission and the French military forces.

Ivorian political parties and groupings are urged to make further progress in their reconciliation, including in dismantling militias, demobilizing and disarming former fighters, restoring State authority across the country and registering voters before the polls.