Soro urges UN, AU to nudge Ivorian peace process

Niamey- Niger (PANA) -- Guillaume Soro, leader of the Ivorian rebel "New Forces" Monday in Niamey urged the UN and the African Union to prop the Ivorian reconciliation process.
"We have expressed the wish that since ECOWAS has addressed the Ivorian problem and so far there are difficulties, the African Union and the UN can come in to ensure that the sticking points are dealt with and the reconciliation process in Cote d'Ivoire revived," Soro told journalists after an audience with Niger President Mamadou Tandja.
Soro, who led a delegation of the New Forces, said he briefed the Niger leader on the Ivorian conflict and the Linas-Marcoussis accord, "the only international legal framework for the resolution of the crisis.
" He said Tandja urged Ivorians to work together and resolve their differences.
Soro said "ECOWAS finds itself today in a dilemma because the presidential clique in Côte d'Ivoire has taken hostage, all West African communities living in the country.
" He said the African Union and the UN should support the ECOWAS initiatives so that Côte d'Ivoire "can quickly regain peace and unity.
" The New Forces delegation, which was due to proceed to Gabon, has visited some other West African countries including Ghana for talks with President John Kufuor, the ECOWAS chair.
The reconciliation process in Cote d'Ivoire has stalled since 22 September when the New Forces pulled out of the national unity government accusing President Laurent Gbagbo of undermining the Linas-Marcoussis accord.

24 november 2003 20:49:00




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