SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS ATTEMPTS AT FORCE TO INFLUENCE POLITICAL SITUATION, OVERTHROW ELECTED GOVERNMENT IN CÔTE D'IVOIRE

20 December 2002
SC/7619

SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS ATTEMPTS AT FORCE TO INFLUENCE POLITICAL SITUATION, OVERTHROW ELECTED GOVERNMENT IN CÔTE D'IVOIRE

20/12/2002
Press ReleaseSC/7619

Security Council

4680th Meeting (Evening)

SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS ATTEMPTS AT FORCE TO INFLUENCE POLITICAL SITUATION,

OVERTHROW ELECTED GOVERNMENT IN CÔTE D'IVOIRE

Concerned About Humanitarian Consequences, it

Supports Deployment of West African Force Before 31 December

The Security Council this evening firmly condemned attempts to use force to influence the political situation in Côte d’Ivoire and to overthrow the elected Government.

In a presidential statement (document S/PRST/2002/42) read out by its President, Alfonso Valdivieso (Colombia), the Council stressed that the crisis in Côte d'Ivoire could only be solved through a negotiated and peaceful political solution.  It called on all parties involved in the conflict to work actively to achieve such a solution and to abstain from any act or declaration that could jeopardize efforts to that end.  Such a solution must address the underlying causes of the conflict.

The Council welcomed, in particular, the commitment of the President of Côte d’Ivoire to submit, in the coming days, a comprehensive plan to end the crisis, stressing that such a plan was a crucial step towards achieving a peaceful solution.  It called upon the President to fully involve all parties and to seek consensus among them.

Expressing its grave concern at the situation, and its serious consequences for the population of Côte d'Ivoire and the region, the Council also expressed its full support for the deployment of an Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) force, under the command of Senegal, before 31 December, as called for in the final communiqué of the Dakar Summit.

The Council expressed its deepest concerns at reports of mass killings and serious violations of human rights in Côte d’Ivoire.  It called on all parties to ensure full respect for human rights and international law, particularly with regard to the civilian population, regardless of origin, and to bring all those responsible to justice.  It also called on the international community to provide urgent humanitarian assistance to those in need throughout the subregion and on all parties to provide unhindered access to affected populations.

Beginning at 7:38 p.m., the meeting adjourned at 7:46 p.m.

Presidential Statement

Following is the full text of presidential statement (document S/PRST/2002/42):

“The Security Council expresses its grave concern at the situation in Côte d’Ivoire and its serious consequences for the population of this country and the region.  The Council firmly condemns attempts to use force to influence the political situation in Côte d’Ivoire and to overthrow the elected Government.  It calls for full respect for the constitutional order of Côte d’Ivoire and emphasizes its full support to the legitimate government of Côte d’Ivoire.  It stresses also the need to respect the sovereignty, political unity and territorial integrity of Côte d’Ivoire.  It calls on all States in the region to refrain from any interference in Côte d’Ivoire.

“The Security Council stresses that the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire can only be solved through a negotiated and peaceful political solution.  It calls upon all parties involved in the conflict to work actively to achieve such a solution and to abstain from any act or declaration that could jeopardize efforts to that end.  Such a solution must address the underlying causes of the conflict.

“The Security Council strongly supports the efforts by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), currently chaired by Senegal, to promote a peaceful resolution of the conflict.  It urges ECOWAS leaders to further their efforts in a coordinated manner.  In this regard it welcomes the Final Communiqué adopted on 18 December 2002 (document S/2002/1386) at the extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS in Dakar.

“In particular the Security Council welcomes the commitment by the President of Côte d’Ivoire to submit in the coming days a comprehensive plan to end the crisis.  It stresses that such a plan is a crucial step towards achieving a peaceful solution and calls upon the President of Côte d’Ivoire to involve fully all parties and to seek consensus among them.

“The Security Council also takes note of paragraph 18 of the Final Communiqué of the Dakar Summit, whereby ECOWAS requests the United Nations and the Secretary-General to contribute to the resolution of the crisis.  The Council commends the Secretary-General for his efforts to promote a negotiated settlement, in coordination with ECOWAS.  The Council requests him to continue those efforts, particularly by providing all necessary support and assistance to the ECOWAS mediation.  The Council requests the Secretary-General to keep it regularly informed about the situation.

“The Security Council expresses its full support for the deployment in Côte d’Ivoire of the ECOMOG force, under the command of Senegal, before

31 December 2002 as called for in the Final Communiqué of the Dakar Summit.  It commends all ECOWAS countries which have decided to contribute troops to this force and calls upon the international community to provide assistance to it.

“The Security Council also commends France for its efforts, at the request of the Government of Côte d’Ivoire, to prevent further fighting, on a provisional basis pending the deployment of the ECOMOG force.  It also expresses its appreciation for the efforts of France to contribute to a political solution of the crisis, including the possible hosting of meetings related to the situation in Côte d’Ivoire.  It also recognizes the efforts of the African Union towards a resolution of the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire.

“The Security Council expresses its deepest concerns at reports of mass killings and serious violations of human rights in Côte d’Ivoire.  It calls on all

parties to ensure full respect for human rights and international law, particularly with regard to the civilian population regardless of its origin, and to bring to justice all those responsible for any violation thereof.  The Council welcomes the decision by the Secretary-General to request the High Commissioner for Human Rights to send a mission to gather precise information regarding the violations of human rights and of international humanitarian law in Côte d’Ivoire, including through the dispatch of a fact-finding mission.

“The Security Council also expresses its concern at the humanitarian consequences of the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire.  It calls upon the international community to provide urgent humanitarian assistance to those in need throughout the subregion affected by the Ivoirian crisis.  It also calls on all parties to provide unhindered access to affected populations.”

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For information media. Not an official record.