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Security Council extends mandate of UN force in Côte d’Ivoire through end of May

The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI), and the French forces supporting it, for another four months to help support the staging of free, fair and transparent elections in the West African nation.

Long-awaited Ivorian presidential polls possible this spring – UN envoy

Côte d’Ivoire has made significant gains in recent months towards holding its long-awaited presidential elections, and if the remaining issues are resolved, the polls could be held this spring, the top United Nations envoy to the West African nation said today.

Ban encourages Ivorian parties to complete tasks ahead of March polls

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on all parties in Côte d’Ivoire to press ahead with the remaining preparations for the West African nation’s presidential polls, which have repeatedly been postponed since 2005 and are now slated for March.

Additional UN peacekeepers requested ahead of Côte d’Ivoire elections

The Presidents of Côte d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso have asked that an additional unit of up to 500 peacekeepers from Burkina Faso be added to the United Nations mission in Côte d’Ivoire to reinforce security ahead of elections intended to reunify the West African country that was split into a rebel-held north and Government-controlled south by civil war in 2002.