Ouattara camp asks Paris to bring I Coast's Gbagbo to justice

10th April 2011, Comments 0 comments

Lawyers for Ivory Coast's internationally recognised president Alassane Ouattara on Sunday urged the United Nations and France to "neutralise" forces of his rival Laurent Gbagbo and turn over the embattled strongman to justice.

"We call on the impartial forces of ONUCI (the UN mission in Ivory Coast), with the backing of Licorne (the French corps) to immediately destroy heavy weapons, neutralise militiamen in the pay of Gbagbo who make up an illegal occupation force, and to turn over the defeated (presidential) candidate to justice," Ouattara's French lawyers said in a statement released in Paris.

They added that their appeal, which was cleared with Ouattara, was in line with "the spirit and the letter" of UN Security Council Resolution 1975 adopted last month which notably calls for necessary measures to protect civilians and prevent the use of heavy weapons against civilian populations.

Forces of the two rival presidents are battling it out in Abidjan but outgunned Gbagbo loyalists are putting up stiff resistance and have even regained some of their lost positions.

© 2011 AFP

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