Gbagbo captured

Just as the Ivory Coast was about to descend into full-blown civil war, the ex-President, Laurent Gbagbo was captured and forced to enter negotiations, in which he agreed to resign. Mr Gbagbo was defeated in last years elections but refused to handover power to the winner, Alassane Ouattara. This prompted fierce fighting by troops loyal to both sides, which left at least 1,500 dead and forced a million people to flee their homes. Now, Mr Ouattara has taken up the presidency, but he faces troubled times. In an effort to calm the international community he has pledged to allow the International Criminal Court to investigate the alleged war crimes of both his own and Mr Gbagbo’s forces. Although the conflict was officially resolved with Gbagbo’s capture, there is still sporadic but intense fighting – especially in the main city of Abidjan where there are thousands of armed Gbagbo supporters. The fear is that, after French forces helped capture Mr Gbagbo, his supporters will excite the anti-French sentiment left over from the colonial era. It is still possible that violence could escalate. And what of Mr Gbagbo himself? There is debate as to whether a trial at the Hague would really be benificial to the stability of the country, or if it would be better for him to go into exhile. It all depends on how his defeated forces react.

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