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Army Says Rebels Are Threatening Peace Process

Cote d’Ivoire’s national army has called on rebels who control the north of the country to stop a boycott of peace-building efforts and abandon “all belligerent acts”, saying the rebels were threatening peace and unity in the war-torn West African nation. In a statement on Tuesday Lt-Col Philippe Mangou, the Armed Forces of Cote d’Ivoire (FANCI) operations commander, said that since 4 July, when both the army and rebel fighters declared the end of war, the rebels had acted contrary to the ceasefire declaration. The rebels had not helped Ivorian peace efforts, the FANCI said. “The New Forces have not respected all their engagements. They did not relinquish some of their positions in the “zone of confidence” and they maintain roadblocks on major economic highways,” the army statement said. “We have also witnessed pillaging, threats on the populations and grand theft of which the crowning moment was the attack on the branch of the Central Bank of West African States in Bouake [in late September],” the statement added. The rebel fighters, Mangou said, were perpetuating a de-facto territorial division of the country. Full Story

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