Daily Brief on Côte d'Ivoire for 27 Aug 2007
- ONUCI participates in National Day of Solidarity
- GHANBATT and Licorne conduct simulation exercise
- Local populations complain about extortion at checkpoints
- Human Rights Officers monitor the situation of returnees in Touleupleu
The United Nations Operation in Cote d'Ivoire participated in the 2nd National Day of Solidarity, which was organized by the Ivorian Government in Abengourou, 210 km northeast of Abidjan, on Saturday 25 August 2007. The OIC of UNOCI, Abou Moussa, was represented at the event by the Chief of Public Information, Margherita Amodeo. On behalf of the OIC, Ms Amodeo reiterated UNOCI's inflinching support for vulnerable groups. She said that Security Council resolution 1765 (2007) called on the signatories of the Ouagadou Political Agreement to facilitate the voluntary return, reintegration and security of the Internally Displaced Persons. She added that, in this regard, the United Nations family would not leave any stone unturned to help the reintegration of the IDPs.
The Minister of Solidarity with War Victims and his colleague of Justice and Human Rights representing the Prime Minister attended the ceremony along with several international officials and representatives of the Diplomatic Corps.
A joint simulation exercise took place late last week between Licorne and Ghanbatt troops in Boundoukou. The operation simulated Licorne's reinforcement of UNOCI troops under "siege" and ways to disperse a potentially violent demonstration. The exercise was deemed a success, and may pave the way for similar joint exercises in future.
The Mixed Brigade of Ngatadolikro and UNPOL police are pursuing an investigation into the knifing to death of two people in the village of Semoukro, 18 km away. Local residents reported the killings on Saturday. Neither the victims nor the assailant(s) have been identified to date.
Residents of Iboguhé complained to UNOCI military observers about harassment by gendarmes deployed in the Issia area. According to villagers, gendarmes are routinely stopping travellers, mostly cyclists, along the Issia-Daloa road, asking them to pay between 2000 to 3000 CFA in order to avoid confiscation of their bicycles.
Extortion is also a main concern in Dioulé near Man in Forces Nouvelles-held territory. Residents told military observers that FN elements were using their numerous checkpoints surrounding their village to illegally collect money.
On Thursday 24 August, a PAKBAT patrol was sent to Zuenoula to witness a football competition named "Tournament of Peace", organized by the "Committee of Unity, Peace and Love". The patrol distributed food and sports items to participants.
PAKBAT yesterday distributed clothing among residents of Dieouzon, Fengolo and Baoubli villages, situated near Duékoué.
On 23 August, the Regional Human Rights Office in Korhogo reported the release of FAFN element Traoré Zié Abou who has been detained since 10 October 2006 for his alleged involvement in the murder of a 17- year old boy in Korhogo.
On 23 August, the Regional Human Rights Office in Duékoué conducted a mission to Toulepleu (150 km west of Duékoué) to monitor the situation of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who voluntarily returned to the village of Péhé (15 km from Toulepleu). The Office noted that around 200 IDPs had been reintegrated into the population since 6 August.
On 23 August, the San Pedro Regional Human Rights Office held a training session on international human rights standards for police officers in San Pedro. The group was highly motivated and requested future collaboration with the office.