Jump to navigation

Published 27th September 2002

Vol 43 No 19

Côte d'Ivoire

The nightmare scenario

An army rebellion may send the once-prosperous country down the same road as its unstable neighbours

Côte d'Ivoire is in danger of fragmenting on ethnic lines as efforts to put down an army mutiny turn into an all-out assault on immigrants and on opponents of President Laurent Gbagbo. There had been rumblings for months among dissident soldiers recruited into the army by former military leader General Robert Gueï (AC Vol 43 No 10). He was killed during the mutiny by troops loyal to Gbagbo. The mutiny broke out in the early hours of 19 September while Gbagbo was in Rome. The mutineers killed Interior Minister Emile Boga Doudou and attacked the home of Defence Minister Moïse Lida Kouassi. Gueï's body was found dumped in a ditch. The government claimed he was shot dead as he was heading for the television station to proclaim a coup, though he was dressed in a rather unpresidential tee-shirt and died from a single shot to the head. His wife Rose was also shot dead and the body of his aide-de-camp, Captain Fabien Coulibaly, was found riddled with bullets. The villa of opposition leader Alassane Dramane Ouattara ('ADO') was torched. He took refuge first with his neighbour the German Ambassador, then in the large and well secured French Embassy, from where he accused the government of trying to kill him, too. Former President Henri Konan Bédié holed up with the Canadian envoy.

Corruption club

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

View site

Mwanawasa's anti-corruption claims are in doubt as evidence of election-rigging emerges

'I will gladly step down if the court rules that I was elected fraudulently,' announced President Levy Mwanawasa on 19 September. Anderson Mazoka, the runner-up in last December's ...

Leaving the quagmire

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

View site

Kigali's withdrawal of troops from Congo creates problems for everyone

According to a sympathetic diplomat, the Kigali government has 'achieved in eight years what has taken 50 in Israel ­ the loss of the moral high ground after a genocide against...

Our friends in the north

Libyan troops make President Patassé feel more secure but he doesn't seem to trust anyone

Though Central African Republic has now denied giving Libya a 99-year minerals lease, Colonel Moammar el Gadaffi is certainly getting valuable strategic benefits from providing sec...

King and pawns

Absolute monarchy may be benign but donors and neighbours don't like it

One of Africa's most traditional states may be in for the shock of a modern constitution. As pressure for change builds up both at home and abroad, a committee headed by Prince Dav...


Uranium trail

British Premier Tony Blair's claim that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein tried to get 'significant quantities of uranium from Africa' seems to be drawn from sources in South Africa a...

KANU at war

Self-declared politics professor President Daniel arap Moi is trying to bring his ruling Kenya African National Union to order before its 8 October conference at Kasarani to nomina...

Retirement tent

Leaders of the Gadaffi family circle and expert committees are quietly discussing plans for a constitution.

Joined-up aid

The late September annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank will discuss proposals to review the performance of national development agencies and multilate...