Security Council Press Statement on Côte d’Ivoire
The following Security Council press statement on Côte d’Ivoire was delivered today by President Juan Antonio Yañez-Barnuevo (Spain):
The members of the Security Council heard this morning a briefing by the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Côte d’Ivoire, Albert Tevoedjre. The Security Council expressed its support for the efforts of the Special Representative to bring peace and stability to Côte d’Ivoire.
The members of the Council took note with satisfaction of the resumption of the activities of the government of national reconciliation in accordance with the commitments taken during the Accra III Summit of 30 July 2004.
However, the members of the Council expressed concern over the lack of progress in key sectors of the national reconciliation process in Côte d’Ivoire, just before the deadlines agreed in Accra III. The members of the Council underlined that this lack of progress is not only holding back the peace process in Côte d’Ivoire, but is also detrimental to further progress in the subregion as a whole.
The members of the Council exhorted, in particular, President Laurent Gbagbo to do everything in his power to ensure the revision of article 35 of the Constitution, as he committed himself in Accra. They also exhorted the Forces Nouvelles to start as soon as possible before 15 October, and without preconditions, the demobilization, disarmament and reintegration process to which they committed themselves in Accra. They stressed that all paramilitary and militia groups must also be disarmed. They exhorted Ivorian Members of Parliament to accelerate consideration of legislative reforms in the National Assembly with a view to their adoption before the end of this month, in particular, the law on the independent electoral commission.
The members of the Council condemned the attacks against United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) personnel and stated that those responsible for these attacks should be held accountable.
The members of the Council expressed grave concern for the human rights situation in the country and looked forward to the upcoming report of the international commission of inquiry.
The members of the Council recalled in the strongest terms that open, free and fair elections before November 2005, in accordance with the Ivorian Constitution, is the only possible solution to a peaceful settlement of the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire.
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