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15 Nov 2020 | 11:48 PM UTC

Cote d'Ivoire: Opposition groups call for resumption of countrywide civil disobedience campaign November 16 /update 15

Opposition groups call for resumption of countrywide civil disobedience campaign November 16; further unrest possible nationwide

security
CIV

Event

Opposition groups and political youth organizations have called for a resumption of a countrywide civil disobedience campaign from Monday, November 16. Protests and associated unrest are likely to take place in urban centers nationwide, with clashes between protesters and security forces likely in some areas. 

At least three people were killed and over 30 others wounded as clashes related to the recent presidential election broke out between opposition supporters and those loyal to President Alassane Ouattara in M'Batto (Moronou region) on Tuesday, November 10. Many of those involved in the clashes were armed with crude weapons and the police had to call for reinforcements from neighboring towns to restore order.

A heightened security presence is expected in urban centers nationwide in the coming days. Further clashes between rival political supporters are to be expected across the country in the near term.

Context

President Alassane Ouattara had been expected to stand down at the end of his current term, but the sudden death of his expected successor, Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, on July 8 left the ruling RHDP coalition with no clear candidate going into the polls. However, Ouattara's decision to stand again has been opposed by the opposition and civil society groups. Unrest linked to the issue has resulted in several fatalities and dozens of arrests.

After opposition groups boycotted the election on October 31, Ouattara was confirmed as having won a third term on November 3 with 94.27 percent of the vote on a 53.9 percent turnout. However, the result was rejected by the two main opposition candidates, Pascal Affi N'Guessan and Henri Konan Bédié, who announced the formation of a joint National Transitional Council (NTC) to prepare for fresh elections. Violent unrest has continued in various locations across the country since the election results were announced.

Advice

Those in Cote d'Ivoire are advised to monitor developments and remain apprised of the political situation, avoid all public demonstrations and political gatherings as a precaution, avoid discussing sensitive political topics in public or on social media, and heed all instructions issued by the local authorities.

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