UN Security Council extends troop transfer from UN mission in Liberia to Cote d'Ivoire

09:42, February 17, 2011      

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The UN Security Council on Wednesday unanimously adopted a resolution extending a temporary troop transfer from the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) to the UN Operation in Cote d'Ivoire (UNOCI), amid ongoing political turmoil in the West African country.

Cote d'Ivoire's political crisis has dragged into its 11th week, as two different candidates, Alassane Ouattara and Laurent Gbagbo, were both sworn in as president after the Nov. 28 presidential runoff election.

The resolution extends by up to three months the redeployment of 2,000 additional military personnel, transferred from UNMIL to UNOCI's original force of more than 8,600. The troop transfer is comprised of three infantry companies and one aviation unit that includes two military utility helicopters and three armed helicopters with crews.

The vote comes on the heels of the decision on Wednesday by West Africa's regional stock exchange to suspend operations in Cote d'Ivoire as the political situation continues to deteriorate.

Meanwhile, at least 296 people have been killed in the weeks following the election, according to the UN.

The UN and African Union have recognized Outtara as the winner of the Nov. 28 election, while Gbagbo holds on to power in defiance of international pressure to step down.

Source: Xinhua

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