Côte d'Ivoire

Ivory Coast rebels to go to Paris for more talks

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ABIDJAN, Feb 20 (Reuters) - Leaders of Ivory Coast's main rebel group will fly to Paris on Thursday for further talks on forming a coalition government to end their country's civil war, a rebel spokesman said.

A row over the composition of the government under a new prime minister has held up implementation of last month's French-brokered accord to end a conflict in the West African country since last September.

"We have been invited by the Prime Minister Seydou Diarra to help him establish the government of reconciliation as soon as possible because people are tired of this war," Sidiki Konate told Reuters from the rebel stronghold of Bouake.

Diarra is in Paris for a summit of African leaders. Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo decided not to attend.

The main sticking point to the new government is whether the Patriotic Movement of Ivory Coast, the biggest of three rebel factions, will get top defence and interior ministry jobs it says it was promised during last month's peace talks.

Gbagbo's supporters and the army say that is impossible.

Reuters - Thomson Reuters Foundation
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