Ban: perpetrators of ambush of peacekeepers in Côte d’Ivoire must be held accountable

Posted by on Jun 9, 2012 in News | No Comments

UN News Centre

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) is informed by his spokesperson, Martin Nesirky, of the killing of seven peacekeepers in Côte d’Ivoire. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

8 June 2012 – Expressing sadness and outrage, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today called on the Government of Côte d’Ivoire to do its utmost to identify those responsible for an attack which left seven peacekeepers dead.

According to the UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI), the peacekeepers had been on a patrol in the country’s west, south of the locality of Tai, when they were ambushed.

“I call on the Government of Côte d’Ivoire to do its utmost to identify the perpetrators and hold them accountable for this deadly attack,” he said in a media encounter at UN Headquarters in New York.

“My heart goes out to the families at this difficult time, and I express my deepest sympathy to the Government of Niger for this tragedy,” he added.

Earlier, the head of UNOCI, Bert Koenders, strongly condemned the attack, which took place in an area where the peacekeeping mission recently strengthened its presence due to threats of attacks against the civilian population.

“UNOCI will take all the required measures following this severe violation of international law,” UNOCI said in a statement.

In his remarks, Secretary-General Ban noted that the full details of the attack are not yet available, but that he understood that other peacekeepers are still in danger.

“Even tonight, after the attack, more than 40 peacekeepers remain with the villagers in this remote region to protect them from this armed group,” Mr. Ban said. “My thoughts are with these brave peacekeepers and the community they are protecting.”

In a statement issued on Friday, the spokesperson for the General Assembly President, Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, said he strongly condemned the attack, and said those responsible must be brought to justice and made to face the full weight of the law.

“President Al-Nasser stresses that the safety and security of UN peacekeepers and other UN personnel in Cote d’Ivoire must be respected and guaranteed in accordance with international law and under all circumstances,” the spokesperson added.

UNOCI was established in 2004 by the Security Council to facilitate the peace process in the country, which was split by civil war in 2002 into a rebel-held north and Government-controlled south.

The mission, whose current mandate runs until 31 July, is currently tasked with assisting the country tackle the many challenges it faces in the wake of the violence that followed presidential elections in late 2010 and the electoral crisis that finally ended in April 2011. These include the restoration of law and order, national reconciliation, the holding of legislative elections, and economic recovery.Expressing sadness and outrage, Secretary-GeneralBan Ki-moon today called on the Government of Côte d’Ivoire to do its utmost to identify those responsible for an attack which left seven peacekeepers dead.

According to the UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI), the peacekeepers had been on a patrol in the country’s west, south of the locality of Tai, when they were ambushed.

“I call on the Government of Côte d’Ivoire to do its utmost to identify the perpetrators and hold them accountable for this deadly attack,” he said in a media encounter at UN Headquarters in New York.

“My heart goes out to the families at this difficult time, and I express my deepest sympathy to the Government of Niger for this tragedy,” he added.

Earlier, the head of UNOCI, Bert Koenders, strongly condemned the attack, which took place in an area where the peacekeeping mission recently strengthened its presence due to threats of attacks against the civilian population.

“UNOCI will take all the required measures following this severe violation of international law,” UNOCI said in a statement.

In his remarks, Secretary-General Ban noted that the full details of the attack are not yet available, but that he understood that other peacekeepers are still in danger.

“Even tonight, after the attack, more than 40 peacekeepers remain with the villagers in this remote region to protect them from this armed group,” Mr. Ban said. “My thoughts are with these brave peacekeepers and the community they are protecting.”

In a statement issued on Friday, the spokesperson for the General Assembly President, Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, said he strongly condemned the attack, and said those responsible must be brought to justice and made to face the full weight of the law.

“President Al-Nasser stresses that the safety and security of UN peacekeepers and other UN personnel in Cote d’Ivoire must be respected and guaranteed in accordance with international law and under all circumstances,” the spokesperson added.

UNOCI was established in 2004 by the Security Council to facilitate the peace process in the country, which was split by civil war in 2002 into a rebel-held north and Government-controlled south.

The mission, whose current mandate runs until 31 July, is currently tasked with assisting the country tackle the many challenges it faces in the wake of the violence that followed presidential elections in late 2010 and the electoral crisis that finally ended in April 2011. These include the restoration of law and order, national reconciliation, the holding of legislative elections, and economic recovery.

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