View Full Version : Ivory Coast mercenary coup plot claims are absurd, says US

David Guyatt
12-29-2010, 01:41 PM
Interestingly, a non-denial, denial by the US - so quite possibly true.

The government are hoping that offshore oil exploration will increase output from roughly 33,000 barrels of oil a day to over 200,000.


Ivory Coast mercenary coup plot claims are absurd, says US

Interior minister alleges that American nationals entered Ivory Coast on mission to overthrow the president, Laurent Gbagbo

David Smith and agencies
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 29 December 2010 12.54 GMT

Ivory Coast interior minister Emile Guirieoulou alleged in a press conference that US nationals were involved in a plot to overthrow Laurent Gbagbo.

The United States has dismissed as "absurd" claims that it had sent mercenaries to Ivory Coast to oust president Laurent Gbagbo.

Gbagbo's interior minister, Emile Guirieoulou, alleged that 10 Americans who flew in, purportedly to investigate grenade damage to the US embassy, were involved in a plot to overthrow the embattled leader.

Guirieoulou told a press conference: "This plane was supposed to disembark some persons presented as American experts tasked to evaluate damages caused to the American embassy after a rocket attack during the opposition demonstration.

"The plane has asked and been granted permission to land in Abidjan. Surprisingly, the plane, which arrived from Algiers, finally landed in [Ivory Coast's northern capital of] Bouake and later left. We have good reasons to think that the 10 Americans who disembarked are mercenaries."

Rumours of outside intervention have been circulating in the Ivorian press. The Notre Voie newspaper reported: "To impose [opposition leader Alassane] Ouattara on Ivorians, mercenaries have been recruited to transform Abidjan into a battlefield," adding that German and French operatives have been hired "to assassinate Ivorian authorities including president Laurent Gbagbo".

The paper also alleged that the US embassy in Abidjan is harbouring "some 50 war-trained American GIs" whose mission is to organise "an attack against the Ivorian president".

Mark Toner, a spokesman for the US state department, described the charges as "absurd" and "ridiculous", the Voice of America reported.

The US has joined the UN, EU and African Union in calling for Gbagbo to stand down after presidential elections on 28 November, but he has refused to accept defeat by Ouattara.

Amid widespread reports of human rights abuses, almost 20,000 people, mostly women and children, have fled Ivory Coast for neighbouring Liberia, according to the UN refugee agency.

State-controlled TV has indicated that several million African nationals living in Ivory Coast might be at risk if threats from African countries of military intervention against Gbagbo continue.

West African leaders are considering their next move after Gbagbo rebuffed their ultimatum to step down or face removal by force.

The presidents of Sierra Leone, Benin and Cape Verde are to brief their Nigerian counterpart, Goodluck Jonathan, today in Abuja after they left Ivory Coast without Gbagbo, whom they had hoped to accompany into exile.

Asked about the timing of the next meeting, the Gbagbo's foreign minister, Alcide Djédjé, said it would be around 2 January.

Nigeria is the most powerful member of the 15-nation regional bloc Ecowas, which has vowed to use "legitimate force" if Gbagbo does not relinquish power.

In a sign of escalating tensions, the UN mission said one of its peacekeepers had been wounded with a machete when a large crowd in a pro-Gbagbo neighbourhood encircled a convoy and set one of its three vehicles on fire.

Weeks of post-election violence may have left 200 people dead, according to the US. Human rights groups blame security forces associated with Gbagbo for hundreds of arrests and dozens of cases of torture and disappearances.

The UN has said it was unable to investigate reports of a mass grave because of restrictions on the movement of its personnel.

Magda Hassan
12-29-2010, 02:13 PM
How does it go? Never believe anything until it has been officially denied. :spy:

Magda Hassan
12-30-2010, 05:20 AM
Ivory Coast UN ambassador warns of genocide risk

http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/50610000/jpg/_50610083_010918917-1.jpg Mr Gbagbo's supporters have said they will storm the hotel where Mr Ouattara is holed up
Continue reading the main story (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12091738#story_continues_1) Ivory Coast: Two presidents, one crisis

Armed and ready (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12083228)
Siege mentality (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12068131)
Cocoa high (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12047762)
Q&A: Ivory Coast election crisis (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-11916590)

Ivory Coast's newly appointed ambassador to the UN has warned the country is "on the brink of genocide".
In a TV interview, Youssoufou Bamba said there had been large scale violation of human rights as a result of the ongoing political unrest.
Laurent Gbagbo is refusing to step down despite his rival, Alassane Ouattara, being internationally accepted as the presidential election winner.
The UN has accused state media of inciting hatred against it.
Mr Gbagbo has said Mr Ouattara's victory in November was illegitimate. Both men have been sworn in as president.
Mr Bamba, who was appointed by Mr Ouattara, was formally welcomed at the UN's New York headquarters on Wednesday, solidifying UN support for Mr Ouattara.
At a press conference, Mr Bamba said Mr Ouattara had been elected in a "free, fair, transparent, democratic election".
"To me the debate is over, now you are talking about how and when Mr Gbagbo will leave office," he said.
http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/50610000/jpg/_50610041_010917878-1.jpg The UN's acceptance of Mr Bamba as ambassador solidifies its support for Mr Ouattara
Mr Bamba said Mr Ouattara's main concern now was the "massive violation of human rights" in the past few weeks.
He said 172 people had been killed "only because they want to demonstrate, they want to speak out, they want to defend the will of the people".
"We think it's unacceptable. Thus, one of the messages I try to get across during the conversations I have conducted so far, is [that] we are on the brink of genocide."
Mr Bamba said some houses had been marked according to the residents' tribal background, and that he was concerned about what could happen next.
"Something should be done," he said.
'Final assault' Mr Bamba said he hoped to meet with every member of the UN Security Council and "explain to them the gravity of the situation".
"We expect the United Nations to be credible and the United Nations to prevent violation and to prevent the election to be stolen from the people," he said.
In a news conference earlier on Wednesday, UN peacekeeping chief Alain Le Roy launched an unprecedented attack on Ivory Coast's Gbagbo-controlled state TV.
Continue reading the main story (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12091738#story_continues_2) Analysis

John James BBC News, Abidjan
It's good to talk, they say, and even though all the mediation efforts so far seem to have yielded little fruit, Ecowas are prepared to give more time to discussions.
On the ground, as people await the prospect of an intervention force with a good degree of fear, life continues to be disrupted by the transport strike called in support of Mr Ouattara.
The indefinite strike was called on Monday, but only really kicked in the next day. For those coming from outlying areas of Abidjan without access to private vehicles, it is extremely difficult getting into work. Reports from elsewhere in the country suggest the strike has left most towns quiet.

"The declarations I hear on the RTI are concerning us and shocking us, because they clearly instigate the population to turn against ONUCI [UN mission in Ivory Coast]," he said.
He said an incident where a peacekeeper was wounded with a machete when his patrol was encircled by angry crowds was a "direct consequence of all the appeals to hatred, lies and anti-ONUCI propaganda".
On Wednesday, the presidents of Benin, Sierra Leone and Cape Verde left Ivory Coast without having reached deal with the two rivals.
The leaders had been sent by regional bloc Ecowas, which had threatened in a statement (http://news.ecowas.int/presseshow.php?nb=192&lang=en&annee=2010) to send in troops to force Mr Gbagbo to step down.
Ecowas said the three men would return to the country on 3 January for more talks.
Despite international support, Mr Ouattara and his Prime Minister Guillaume Soro remain holed up in a hotel in the main city of Abidjan, protected by UN forces.
Supporters of Mr Gbagbo, known as "young patriots", have threatened to storm the hotel.
Young patriots leader Charles Ble Goude, who is also Mr Gbagbo's youth minister, also warned Ecowas not to send troops.
"They should prepare themselves very well because we are thinking about totally liberating our country, and soon I will launch the final assault," he said.
Mr Ble Goude is renowned for his fiery rhetoric and has reportedly made such threats before without carrying them out.
But analysts have warned that inflammatory rhetoric could help push the nation back into civil war, seven years after a previous conflict resulted in it being divided between a rebel-run north and government-controlled south.
The UN has some 9,500 peacekeepers in the country.
Mr Gbagbo has told them to leave, accusing them of interfering in Ivorian affairs. But the UN has refused to do so.
Almost 20,000 people - mostly women and children - have fled Ivory Coast for neighbouring Liberia, fearing further unrest.
Mr Ouattara was initially declared the winner of the elections but his victory was overturned by the Constitutional Council.
The Council, led by an ally of Mr Gbago, ruled that votes in parts of the rebel-held north loyal to Mr Ouattara were invalid.

Magda Hassan
12-31-2010, 06:28 AM
My work here is done!

Lanny Davis drops Ivory Coast account
Dec 29, 2010 09:11 pm | Philip Weiss Ben Smith reports at Politico (http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1210/Davis_resigns_Ivory_Coast_contract.html)... He has Lanny Davis's letter of resignation. This is almost as good as the Marc Rich scandal... He blames the Africans for not picking up the phone. I thought it was spelled Abidjan?

Unfortunately, as you know, the decision was made in Abijan not to allow President Obama's call to be put through to Mr Gbagbo, despite my repeated objections to that decision. Nor have I been able to reach Mr. Gbagbo directly myself to offer him this advice, despite repeated requests, as recently as the last twenty-four hours. Therefore, without going into further details regarding disagreements between me and representatives of the government, of which you are aware, I have reached the conclusion that I have not been allowed to effectuate the mission that I was expressly asked to do by your government, despite all my best efforts to do so.

David Guyatt
12-31-2010, 10:26 AM
The Poodle steps into the fray - freezes Ivory Coast bank accounts.

Uncle quietly pleased.

Laurent Gbagbo buggered.

UK 'would back Ivory Coast action (http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5igVNstudSUB5BWAoo8WmTvoV6R5g?docId=N03975912 93784146518A)'

UK 'would back Ivory Coast action'
(UKPA) – 1 hour ago
Britain would support the use of United Nations-sanctioned military force to compel incumbent Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo to hand over power, Foreign Secretary William Hague has said.
But he stressed he was not raising the prospect of British troops being deployed, although the UK has sent a military liaison officer to the troubled west African state.
Mr Gbagbo is refusing to hand over power to rival Alassane Ouattara, recognised by the international community as having won recent elections.
While Mr Gbagbo clings to office and has control of the armed forces, Mr Ouattara is holed up in a hotel with supporters.
Neighbouring states have launched a concerted effort to persuade Mr Gbagbo to quit, but have also threatened possible military action if he refuses.
Asked on BBC Radio 4's Today programme if the UK would support such action, Mr Hague replied: "Yes, in principle. They would be well advised to seek the authority of the United Nations to do that and we would be supportive of that at the UN."
But he added: "We are a long way here from discussing British forces being deployed. We have deployed a military liaison officer to the country to work on various contingencies with the French, but I'm not raising the possibility today of British forces being deployed."
He called on Mr Gbagbo to step down and said: "Through all possible diplomatic means, we are supporting a resolution of this crisis."
Official bank accounts have been frozen and the Foreign Secretary added: "He (Mr Gbagbo) will run out of money. His power relies on control of the army. He will run out of money in the next few weeks and that means his power will come to an end.
"He should not underestimate the determination of the international community that the will of the people of that country should be recognised."

(my bolding) Dead give away that comment about the "international community" which is a euphemism for the United States.

Ergo, the US was almost certainly the "dark cloak" behind a planned coup.

Ed Jewett
01-01-2011, 07:08 AM
List, chart and map the natural resources there... gemstones, minerals, oil, etc.... Frankly, I am looking to corner the market on cocoa 'cuz I like my hot chocolate before bedtime. :what::unclesam:

Magda Hassan
01-01-2011, 07:40 AM
Some one (that being just one person) has being buying up the cocoa for the last year. Price has been going through the roof. Need to check this more. :mexican:

There is going to be a lot of pissed off pre-menstrual women out there if this keep going.

David Guyatt
01-02-2011, 11:37 AM
Things are hotting up.

The poodle piddles on the party, first recognizing and now "not" recognizing the appointed ambassador (naughty, naughty - should have checked with Hilary first, guys).

Meanwhile, the strutting French cock advises its citizens to leave "for their own safety".

Those who love the smell of "coup d'etat" in the morning will be enjoying their new year.


Britain removes Gbagbo-appointed I.Coast envoy

Britain said on Friday it no longer recognised the ambassador appointed by Ivory Coast strongman Laurent Gbagbo who is refusing to step down after elections widely viewed as having been won by his rival Alassane Ouattara.

"The Foreign Office has today informed Mr Philippe D Djangone-Bi that, as of 31 December 2010, he is no longer the Ambassador for Cote d?Ivoire to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland," a Foreign Office spokeswoman said in a statement.

"We will be moving to recognise the appointee of President Alassane Ouattara in the usual manner," the statement added.

The decision was made in line with a decision taken by Britain's fellow European Union members.

Earlier, British Foreign Secretary William Hague said it was time for Gbagbo "to recognise that he must go."

Asked if Britain would support military intervention to resolve the standoff, Hague told BBC radio: "Yes, in principle... They would be well advised to seek the authority of the United Nations to do that. But we would be supportive of that at the United Nations."

A delegation of three West African presidents visited Abidjan on Tuesday to deliver an ultimatum, but left without a clear result, and have since said they are still pressing for a peaceful solution.

With little sign of an end to the crisis in sight, France on Friday advised its citizens to leave the West African country for their own safety.