The United Nations peacekeeping mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) today welcomed the announcement that the country’s much delayed presidential elections will now be held on 30 November this year.
The publication of the poll date “is one of the greatest achievements in the Ivorian peace process since the outbreak of the crisis more than four years ago,” UNOCI said in a press release issued in Abidjan.
Côte d’Ivoire became divided in 2002 between the Government-controlled south and the rebel Forces Nouvelles-held north, but last year’s Ouagadougou Peace Agreement paved the way for an end to the conflict and included a provision calling for free and fair elections to be held.
Presidential polls were to be held as far back as 2005, but have been delayed several times since then.
In its statement UNOCI encouraged all Ivorian parties “to consolidate the current momentum by demonstrating the same will to move ahead and the same commitment to public interest.”