14 May 2012

Cote d'Ivoire: Rumors of Coup d'Etat and the Security Situation in Country

press release

"Are pro-Soro supporters trying to destabilize Ouattara with the complicity of the FPI?" asks a prominent front page headline in today's issue of Le Nouveau Reveil.

The paper (p. 4) comments that the party of former Ivorian leader Laurent Gbagbo has "no respect" for the authorities in power and is always in a "defiant" posture. The commentator claims that "pro-FPI hardliners" in the army continue "to sabotage" government plans. Along with this situation, the commentary says, the government is yet to come to terms with ex-combatants who, it says, are involved in "armed robbery."

"Is the disarmament a hoax?" asks another front-page headline in this paper which quotes the prefect of the northern town of Sinematiali as saying, "former fighters are still armed," and another official in this region as saying, "80 percent of the armed gangs manning illegal roadblocks are disbanded soldiers."

A report in Fraternite Matin (p. 5) says that the Minister in charge of Defense, Paul Koffi Koffi, recently made an unexpected tour of certain areas in Abidjan following continuous rumors about plans to destabilize the government of Cote d'Ivoire. The visit, the paper says, was to enable the minister to see for himself the security situation on the ground.

In a related development, a report on the same page of the paper says that Cote d'Ivoire and Liberia have reinforced security along their common border. According to the paper, military commanders meeting in Cote d'Ivoire have hammered out a security blueprint that includes the deployment of troops on each side of the frontier of the two countries. Meanwhile, a report in this paper (p. 4) says that at least four persons - including a government soldier - were killed in the western town of Bangolo following fighting between government forces and armed gangs.

This daily press review is compiled by the Information Section of the Public Affairs Office of the American Embassy in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire. The opinions expressed in these reviews in no way reflect the views of the United States Government and are presented for informational purposes only. The accuracy of reports contained in this summary has not been confirmed by the Embassy.

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