Ivorians left out of West African crisis summit

December 6, 2010 12:00 am

, LAGOS, Dec 6 – Ivory Coast has not been invited to a West African special summit on Tuesday on its electoral crisis despite being a member of the regional bloc that will meet, a spokesman said.

Ivory Coast is one of the 15 members of ECOWAS, or the Economic Community of West African States, which will hold the summit in the Nigerian capital Abuja.

The bloc has condemned Laurent Gbagbo\’s swearing in as Ivory Coast president and urged the acceptance of results declared by the electoral commission that showed his rival Alassane Ouattara as the winner of elections.

"Invitations have been sent out and there\’s none to Cote d\’Ivoire," ECOWAS spokesman Sunny Ugoh told AFP on Monday, using the country\’s French name.

"The invitations were issued out to the other 14 member states and Cote d\’Ivoire was not included."

Ugoh could not say why, but pointed out that it would be a meeting of heads of state and government.

"They\’re going to review the latest developments in Cote d\’Ivoire and see exactly what they need to do to resolve the situation there," he said.

ECOWAS said over the weekend that it "strongly condemns any attempt to usurp the popular will of the people of Cote d\’Ivoire and appeals to all stakeholders to accept the results declared by the electoral commission."

Fears of unrest loomed in Ivory Coast as international mediators tried to settle the crisis between the two powerful rivals claiming the presidency.

Following the vote, Gbagbo\’s allies in the Constitutional Court overturned UN-certified results that gave Ouattara victory, annulling allegedly rigged ballots in parts of the north, Ouattara\’s stronghold.


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