Cote d'Ivoire's ex-rebels call for peaceful elections

16:32, October 18, 2010      

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Cote d'Ivoire's ex-rebel New Forces (FN) have launched an initiative to promote peaceful presidential elections in the long-divided West African country.

FN spokesman Felicien Sekongo made a weekend tour of the central cities of Bouake and Sakassou, calling on the citizens to responsibly and peacefully exercise their civic duty.

"As you already know, the New Forces will not have a candidate. But you must know that the candidate for the New Forces is peace, social cohesion and national unity," Sekongo announced.

"Cote d'Ivoire nationals have suffered from the war and we should therefore not impose on them a new crisis," he added.

The spokesman reiterated his call for a violence free election during his tour of Botro, Beoumi, Bouna, Doropo and Tehini.

Sekongo hailed the ongoing process of distributing voter's cards as well as the national identity cards.

"FN took up arms because of the identity problem, but today this problem has been resolved with the issuance of the national identity cards," he said.

During the crusade for peace, the FN officials managed to hold discussions with the demobilized ex-rebels and those who voluntarily agreed to join the army.

The ex-soldiers gave their assurances that they will work for peace and not cause any disturbances during the Oct. 31 elections.

Cote d'Ivoire is heading for the elections expected to reunite the country after being divided into two following the failed coup d'etat attempt in 2002.

Several political groups and civil society organizations are engaged in campaigns to sensitize the population against election violence.

Source: Xinhua


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