on Cote d'Ivoire, As Council Meeting Called, Gbagbo Spin,
December 3, updated -- As in Cote d'Ivoire
the Laurent Gbagbo
dominated Constitutional Council threw out the voting results
announced yesterday by the Electoral Commission, sources in the UN
told Inner City Press on Friday morning that the Security Council
would have an emergency session.
to the Council, UN interpreters were seen assembling. But an
e-mail request for confirmation sent before noon to this month's
presidency, the US Mission to the UN, had been not returned as of 1 pm.
prosecutor who was supposed to meet Friday morning with French
Ambassador Gerard Araud told Inner City Press that meeting had been
canceled, “for this.” With this and other confirmations, the meeting
was reported on Twitter @InnerCityPress (click
the Cote d'Ivoire Mission to the UN came to the Council stakeout, and
pitched to Inner City Press the view that the voting in the North of
Cote d'Ivoire had been “rigged by the Forces Nouvelles” rebels.
still not starting, reportedly until 3 pm, Inner City Press ran to
the UN's noon briefing to ask UN Spokeperson Martin Nesirky what the
role of UNOCI and SRSG Choi had been in the North of Cote d'Ivoire. The
question was not directly answered.
of 2:25 pm -- with SRSG Choi having belatedly (and long
issued the UN's count, that “Candidate Ouattara is the winner,”
the new buzz, from multiple sources, is that no in-person Security
Council meeting will be
held. Rather, a press statement (or even just “elements to the
press”) is being circulated to Council members, and may soon be
issued. This requires read-out on camera at the Security Council
stake out - and SHOULD require some Q&A. Watch this site.
of 3:57 pm -- now the Gbabgo administration has threatened to throw Mr.
Choi (and ONUCI?) out of the country...
Some ask, what message did the Security Council's failure to meet send?
And, why DIDN'T the Council meet earlier today?
UN's Ban and Gbagbo, monitoring of North & response not shown
Inner City Press had asked UN acting Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq:
Press: Côte d'Ivoire. There is a report that an associate of
President [Laurent] Gbagbo has asked SRSG [Special Representative]
Choi [Young-jin] for some kind of -- I don’t know if it’s within
the power of Mr. Choi — but for a recount. Has somehow expressed
an intention to challenge the results from three regions of Côte
d'Ivoire on Sunday’s election? Is that something that the UN can
confirm, and what does it think of that request, if it is aware of
it, by Mr. Gbagbo?
Spokesperson Haq: Well, in terms of rumours, we’re aware
that there have been a number of rumours, including ones that we
believe have been spread to cause panic or unrest in the area. At
this stage, as you know, no results have been announced. We would
note that several rumours are deviating attention from serious
matters. It would be the role of the UN mission, ONUCI, to confirm
those as they come up. But at this stage, what I want to point out
is, I’d like to stress the points made by the Secretary-General in
his statement yesterday afternoon, where he did urge the candidates
and parties to abide by the law in the resolution of any disputes
related to the electoral process.
Secretary-General stresses that any disruption in the electoral
process would not be in the interest of the people of Côte
who have waited many years to reach a successful conclusion to the
crisis, of which these elections are a critical step.
Press: The other day Mr. Choi met with the -- I will dig up his
name — but with this close associate of Mr. Gbagbo. I just want
factually, not rumour or not, has this meeting taken place?
Spokesperson: Mr. Choi is meeting with a number of officials
as his work progresses. And as we made clear yesterday, the Special
Representative of the Secretary-General, Mr. Choi Young-jin, will
continue, in the context of his certification mandate, all his
efforts to safeguard the electoral process so that the will of the
Ivorian people will be respected. The United Nations will provide
its full support to the completion of the electoral operations and to
the Ivorian peace process as a whole.
on December 2,
Inner City Press asked:
Press: On Côte d’Ivoire...I’d like you to confirm that the
head of the elections commission actually asked two Member States in
the Security Council for ONUCI protection to leave the country and
that somehow ONUCI said this request, until it was made directly to
it, wouldn’t be fulfilled. It’s something that’s been reported
to people inside the Council. And the question is whether ONUCI was
aware of a request by the head of the elections commission for ONUCI
protection to leave the country and, if so, what ONUCI’s reaction
Spokesperson Haq: As far as that goes, no, I wouldn’t
confirm any of these specific discussions. What I will say is that
ONUCI is providing protection to the head of the Independent
Electoral Commission, and so, he is receiving protection, as are
see -- watch
* * *