Ivorian Crisis: Ouattara calls on Gbagbo forces to defect to his camp

Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire (PANA) - The world-acclaimed president-elect of Cote d'Ivoire, Alassane Ouattara, on Wednesday urged the military and paramilitary forces loyal to outgoing President Laurent Gbagbo to join "legality and help enforce the vote of Ivorians".

In a statement on TV Côte d'Ivoire (TCI), Quattara urged the forces to join their brothers-in-arms, in the Republican Forces of Côte d'Ivoire (RFCI), who have since Monday undertaken to "restore democracy and enforce the vote of the people.

"I ask you to be willing to serve your country and join legality," charged Mr. Ouattara.

"There is still time to join your RFCI brothers-in-arms, the country is calling you. Your civic behaviour can spare further sufferings to our people, " he said, reiterating his commitment to build a "Republican army, respected by all."

Since the start of the RFCI military offensive, several towns that were controlled by forces loyal to Gbagbo have been taken by RFCI.

According to some witnesses, RFCI are set to storm Abidjan, the economic capital, where most of the forces loyal to Gbagbo are assembled.
-0- PANA BAL/ASA/BOS 31March2011

31 march 2011 14:34:29

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