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Vol 61 No 24

Published 3rd December 2020

Côte d'Ivoire

Echoes of the dark days

The president's re-election has revived some of the deadly rivalries of the civil war era. His opponents say that his gestures towards reconciliation lack conviction

It was only hours after the Constitutional Court confirmed President Alassane Ouattara's overwhelming win at the 31 October presidential elections on 9 November that the victor extended an olive branch to the opposition, which had watched helpless as Ouattara barrelled his way to a controversial third term. The opposition, gathered around the unlikely figure of the 86-year-old former president Henri Konan Bédié, himself deposed in Côte d'Ivoire's first coup in 1999, could do no more than announce the creation, on 2 November, of a Conseil national de transition (CNT- Transitional National Council), which the director of the ruling Rassemblement des Houphouëtistes pour la Démocratie et la Paix (RHDP), Adama Bictogo, instantly dismissed as 'an act of defiance against the authorities'.

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