Côte d'Ivoire

Daily briefing on Cote d'Ivoire for Monday 26 Mar 2007


- UN medals for 70 BANBATT peacekeepers;

- Chiefs of staff of FANCI and FAFN attend ONUCI medal parade in Daloa;

- Part of the Force Licorne to be redeployed from Man to Bouaké, Yamoussoukro and Dimbokro;

- Human Rights Division conducts training sessions in Odienné and Daloa;

Ivorian chiefs of staff attend Daloa medal parade

The two Generals of the former belligerent forces in Cote d'Ivoire, General Philippe Mangou of the Armed Forces of Côte d'Ivoire (FANCI) and General Soumaila Bagayoko of the Armed Forces of the Forces Nouvelles (FAFN), today attended a medal parade organized by UNOCI for its Bangladeshi contingent at Sector West Headquarters in Daloa.

Some 70 Bangladeshi soldiers received UN medals for their contribution to peace in Cote d'Ívoire. Over 2000 others will receive their medals at a later date. UNOCI Force Comander General Fernand Amoussou presided over a colorful ceremony, also attended by Licorne Force Commander General Antoine Lecerf, in honour of members of BANBAT, BANENG (Engineering) and BANMED (Medical) serving in Cote d'Ivoire for the remarkable skills and dedication shown in the execution of their tasks.

General Amoussou hailed the first meeting of the commanders of the ex-belligerent forces in Daloa, describing it as "an extremely important sign of their commitment to working together for lasting peace in Cote d'Ívoire."

During the ceremony a tribute was paid to 8 Bangladeshi peacekeepers who lost their lives in Cote dÍvoire while carrying out their duties.

Licorne Forces re-deployed in the Centre

The Force Licorne, which maintains a Quick Reaction Force ready to assist UNOCI soldiers in time of trouble, announced this morning a re-organisation of its forces. The GTIA2, which is based in Man, will be diminished and part of it will be re-deployed in Bouaké, Yamoussoukro and Dimbokro. Helicopter reinforcements will also be based in Bouaké. The force will be more centralized but its role will remain the same as will its capability to rapidly reach any part of the country, Colonel Miclot, the SEHQ Liaison Officer, explained.

Human Rights

On 25 March, the Human Rights Office in Odienné held a session on human rights awareness in the village of Semeiso, 30 km west of Odienné. The session, which focused on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child was attended by 32 persons, including traditional and religious leaders as well as representatives of women and youths. The session was organized in response to reports received by the Human Rights Office, which indicated that most children in the village were being sent to work in the fields instead of to school.

On 21 March, the Regional Human Rights Office in Daloa organized a one-day human rights workshop for 50 teachers of the Groupe Scolaire de la BAD, a school in the city of Daloa. The aim of the workshop was to sensitize participants on universal human rights standards contained in the Ivorian constitution with a view to integrating them in the school's curriculum. Participants also discussed the role of the UN in peacekeeping and the established rules and remedies that govern redress for human rights violations.