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Côte d’Ivoire

CrisisWatch Côte d’Ivoire

Unchanged Situation

COVID-19 restrictions sparked tensions between security forces and citizens and pandemic disrupted preparations of presidential election planned for Oct. Angry mob 5 April destroyed coronavirus testing centre in economic capital Abidjan’s Yopougon neighbourhood, citing risk of contamination; police arrested twelve individuals. President Ouattara 8 April ordered release of 2,004 prisoners to prevent COVID-19 spread in penitentiaries. Military authorities 14 April arrested four military personnel including colonel for allegedly beating and extorting money from residents while enforcing COVID-19 curfew in Guéhiebly area in west. Ahead of presidential election due 31 Oct, govt mid-April suspended revision of electoral list originally scheduled to take place 18 April-2 May; Ouattara 8 April launched controversial revision of electoral code by ordinance, citing restrictions on parliamentary meetings due to COVID-19. African Union’s human rights court 22 April ordered temporary suspension of arrest warrant issued in Dec 2019 for former Assembly Speaker and potential presidential candidate Guillaume Soro over alleged coup attempt and embezzlement of public funds; govt 29 April pulled out of court, accusing it of undermining country’s sovereignty. Meanwhile, Abidjan’s criminal court 28 April sentenced Soro in absentia to twenty years in prison for corruption.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

9 Feb 2017
The problem with the army [in Côte d'Ivoire] is structural disorder that can’t be sorted out with the punctual signing of cheques, even if the cheques are big. Financial Times

Rinaldo Depagne

Senior Adviser Africa & Project Director West Africa

Latest Updates

Op-Ed / Africa

How Europe’s Panic over Migration and Terrorism Is a Big Opportunity for Africa

This week’s summit of African and European leaders in Abidjan is a chance to find a win-win solution.

Originally published in IRIN

Op-Ed / Africa

Europe’s Chance in Africa

With the UK’s withdrawal from the EU now imminent, a dramatic power shift is changing the balances behind the scenes of the fifth African Union-European Union summit this week in Côte d’Ivoire. It is an opportunity for the EU to forge a new Africa strategy.

Originally published in Berlin Policy Journal

Op-Ed / Africa

Côte d’Ivoire: The Illusion of Stability

Among the three principal politicians who have struggled for power in Côte d’Ivoire since 1995, President Alassane Ouattara, 73, is the only one still in the game and is most likely to win the presidential election on 25 October. The significance of this election is not so much the electoral outcome – which seems to be a foregone conclusion – as much as the political choices that will result from a renewed Ouattara mandate. Without meaningful political, security and judicial reforms, Côte d’Ivoire could face yet another prolonged period of violence.

Originally published in Daily Maverick