West African Leaders Push Ivory Coast's Gbagbo to Leave

20K flee country as violent confrontation looms
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2010 1:55 PM CST
West African Leaders Push Ivory Coast Leader to Leave
Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo, left, welcomes Cape Verde President Pedro Pires, front right, in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2010.   (AP Photo/Emanuel Ekra)

(Newser) – Last chance for a peaceful resolution? West African leaders met with Ivory Coast's Laurent Gbagbo today to try to resolve the country’s post-election strife, the BBC reports. The heads of Benin, Sierra Leone, and Cape Verde met with Gbagbo, who has refused to step down despite international support for his opponent, President-elect Alassane Ouattara. A regional bloc has threatened to use force if Gbagbo refuses to budge.

“All went well” at the talks, said Benin's Boni Yayi, though it's unclear whether true progress was made. The leaders were expected to offer Gbagbo an exit route that wouldn't leave him humiliated. Almost 20,000—largely women and children, almost two-thirds of whom are younger than 18—have now fled the country for Liberia, fearing civil war, the UN says. Amid violence that has left at least 173 dead, the African Union yesterday appointed Kenya’s prime minister as a special Ivory Coast envoy.
(Read more African Union stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
X
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.

X