|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
6193rd Meeting (AM)
Security Council Expresses Concern at Delay in Publication of Provisional
Voters List for 29 November Presidential Election in Côte d’Ivoire
Presidential Statement Reiterates Need to Respect Electoral Timeline,
Says Council Determined to Bring Full Support to Credible Electoral Process
The Security Council today expressed its concern at the delay in publication of the provisional voters list for the first round of free, fair and transparent presidential elections in Côte d’Ivoire to be held on 29 November.
In a statement read by the Council’s President Susan Rice of the United States, the Council reiterated it determination to bring its full support to a credible electoral process, stressing that to that end it had extended the mandate and had maintained the troop level of the United Nations Operations in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI).
In its presidential statement S/PRST/2009/25, the Council reiterated that all Ivorian political actors were bound to respect the electoral timeline and urged all Ivorian actors to comply fully with their commitments in order for the voters list to be published. Noting that it would review the situation by 15 October, it expressed its intention to react as appropriate, consistent with resolution 1880 (2009) towards those who would block the progress of the electoral process.
Bedouma Alain Yoda, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation of Burkina Faso, said his country welcomed the interest of the international community for the peace process in Côte d’Ivoire. The United Nations had played a remarkable role in the implementation of the Ouagadougou Agreement. There was now cause for optimism to definitely solve the crisis. The ongoing work on the Electoral Registry and the pre-campaign atmosphere, among other things, were signs of a return to peace.
Thanks to the resolve of the political actors, significant progress had been made in the implementation of the Ouagadougou Agreement, but compliance with the electoral timeline remained the principal challenge. The upcoming publication of the electoral list, however, was a sign of hope. Now the fundamental aim was the organization of incontestable elections that would guarantee a solution of the crisis. Particular attention must be paid to possible disputes arising from the list. He welcomed the work of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in the certification of the electoral process.
He said the resolution of pending military issues and financial support for the elections and demobilization were indispensable for the success of the elections. The results to date were encouraging, but there were still many complex challenges. Those challenges could be resolved, and he was convinced that the timeline of 29 November was still possible. Compliance with the timeline would require mobilization of all concerned actors in order to complete all tasks for implementing the timeline. He called on the international community to lend its support until the crisis was resolved once and for all.
Alain Joyandet, Minister of State for Cooperation and Francophonie of France, first gave expression to his country’s outrage following the events in Conakry, where soldiers shot into a peaceful crowd, killing and maiming civilians.
He said that now was a decisive period for the holding of presidential elections on 29 November, long awaited by the people of Côte d’Ivoire and the international community. The presidential statement underlined the importance of the election in the best possible conditions of democracy and security and was aimed at ensuring Côte d’Ivoire the support of the international community and France. Progress made provided grounds for optimism. The registration procedures had been concluded on 30 June. The deadline for submitting candidates had been opened. After having visited the country, he could confirm that a spirit of an actual campaign was present.
He said the process had entered an irreversible phase. The publication of the provisional electoral list had been postponed twice, however. That was an impediment to the process. He called on all to publish as soon as possible an electoral list accepted by all. Providing security for the elections was also essential.
Ivorians could count on the international community and the backing of France, he said. An indisputable election was an essential condition for solving the crisis. The technical obstacles would only be overcome by the political will of the parties themselves. The election would constitute a real credibility test in the eyes of the Council and the whole of the international community.
The meeting started at 10:07 a.m. and adjourned at 10:25 a.m.
The full text of presidential statement S/PRST/2009/25 reads as follows:
“The Security Council reiterates its full support to the Ouagadougou political process and to the electoral timeline endorsed by all the main Ivorian political actors, leading to the first round of open, free, fair and transparent presidential elections on 29 November 2009. It commends the Facilitator, President Blaise Compaoré of Burkina Faso, for his continued efforts to support the peace process in Côte d’Ivoire.
“The Security Council further reiterates its determination to bring its full support to a credible electoral process and highlights the importance of an inclusive participation of the Ivorian civil society. It stresses that to this end it has extended the mandate and has maintained the troop level of the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) in its resolution 1880 (2009). It further stresses that it expressed in this resolution its intention to authorize the Secretary-General to redeploy troops, as may be needed, between the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) and UNOCI.
“The Security Council expresses its concern at the delay in publication of the provisional voters list, and highlights that further delays in the publication of the voters list may put at risk the timeline for open, free, fair and transparent presidential elections.
“The Security Council reiterates that the Ivorian political actors are bound to respect the electoral timeline. It urges all Ivorian actors to comply fully with their commitments, in order for the voters list to be published as soon as possible in the framework of a transparent and inclusive process. It recalls that the Special Representative of the Secretary-General will certify the voters list explicitly.
“The Security Council will review the situation by 15 October 2009. It expresses its intention to react as appropriate, consistent with its resolution 1880 (2009), towards those who would block the progress of the electoral process.
“The Security Council further expresses its intention to start considering the future direction of UNOCI by reviewing by 15 October its mandate and the benchmarks for a possible drawdown of the operation, in particular in light of the progress of the electoral process.”
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