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U.N. Condemns Deadly Shelling of Civilians in Abidjan

Gbagbo Loyalists May Have Killed 30, Injured 60

Mar 21, 2011 2:11 PM   By Jeff Miller
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RAPAPORT... The U.N.  Security Council condemned a deadly strike on civilians at a marketplace in Côte d’Ivoire’s capital Abidjan and warned that the governing body will punish anyone who obstructs the resolution of the country’s prolonged post-election crisis.  According to the U.N., as many as 30 unarmed civilians were killed and 60 others were injured Thursday after the attack was allegedly carried out by elements of security forces that are loyal to former President Laurent Gbagbo.

Speaking to the press, U.N. ambassador Wang Min of China stressed that such attacks on civilians would not go unpunished.  ''The members of the Security Council reiterate their deep concern about the continuing post-electoral crisis in Côte d’Ivoire and its negative humanitarian consequences on the civilian population, including refugees and internally displaced persons,” he said.

Security Council members were determined “to impose measures, including targeted sanctions, against those who impede the peaceful resolution of the crisis, obstruct the work of UNOCI and other international actors in Côte d’Ivoire or commit violations of human rights and international humanitarian law.”

Diamond-rich Cote d'Ivoire has experienced political unrest since early December at which time President-elect Alassane Ouattara won a runoff election and Gbagbo has refused to step-down. Diamonds in Cote d'Ivoire are banned for export, however many reports suggest that smuggling continues to neighboring countries. The Security Council had intended to review the rough diamond ban only after a free and fair election was held.


Tags: Cote d'Ivoire, council, dead, dying, Jeff Miller, people, security
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