No more hurdles for Cote d'Ivoire's elections: ONUCI

19:13, October 29, 2010      

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The UN peacekeeping mission in Cote d'Ivoire is confident about the holding of the Oct. 31 presidential elections, saying there are no more hurdles for the long-delayed vote.

Only days ahead of Sunday's polls, the optimism was voiced by the special representative of the UN secretary general in Cote d'Ivoire, Choi Young-jin, in an interview with Xinhua on Thursday.

He singled out two factors causing repeated postponements of the country's presidential elections in the past.

"The unavailability of electoral materials and lack of consensus between the candidates on the mode of carrying out the elections were the two reasons that always led to postponements," he said.

"Regarding the electoral materials, the ballot boxes and ballot papers as well as other materials have all been made available. The UN Operation in Cote d'Ivoire (ONUCI) has helped in the transportation of all these materials to the interior of the country.

"Besides, consensus has been found on the two issues of media coverage during electoral campaigns and transmission of results," Choi told Xinhua.

In the opinion of the ONUCI chief, the organization has managed to overcome the major challenges and there are no more road-blocks for Cote d'Ivoire to hold elections on schedule.

"Cote d'Ivoire is ready for the elections and the vote will take place as scheduled," he declared.

The presidential election seen as historic by most observers is expected to end a political crisis that has lasted for years.

The West African country plunged into a civil war after an attempted coup by ex-rebel New Forces (FN) in 2002. It remains divided with the FN holding the north and the loyalists controlling the south. The rival sides concluded a peace accord in 2007 to form a coalition government pending a presidential vote to end the crisis. But the polls have never taken place for a variety of reasons, particularly political differences.



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