Ivory Coast: Stalemate

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January 25, 2006: The government of Laurent Gbagbo is using the radio stations they control in the south to push an anti-UN/French/foreigner message. Gbagbo believes that he has the military force to conquer the rebellious north. Gbagbo also realizes that the French and UN peacekeepers are too strong for his forces to overcome, so he must find some way to convince the French and UN peacekeepers to leave. The UN is not willing to simply remove Gbagbo, if only because he merely represents the attitudes of many in south Ivory Coast. The result is stalemate, and it will remain stalemate for some time.

January 24, 2006: The UN decided to keep peacekeepers in Ivory Coast until December 15th.

January 20, 2006: The leaders of the pro- Gbagbo youth organizations called off the violent anti-UN demonstrations. These riots failed to spur the peacekeepers into using their weapons, and causing a lot of civilian casualties. This, the pro- Gbagbo crowd hoped, would cause the UN to be demoralized and withdraw from the country. The rioters did about two million dollars worth of damage, including looting of NGO compounds they broke into.

 

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