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Situation Report: The Ouagadougou Political Accord: Imminent Divorce or the Renewal of Vows, Chrysantus Ayangafac
11 December 2007

On 19 September 2002, an attempted coup failed to oust the Ivorian president, Laurent Gbagbo, but sparked off a civil war that has since divided the country along a fault line that divides the (mainly Muslim) north and the (mainly Christian) south. The Ivorian crisis is one demonstration of the emptiness of the promises of a post-Cold War peace dividend, globalisation and democratisation in Africa. It is also a glaring example of Africa`s conflict systems, ethnic manipulation, elite fragmentation, foreign intervention and the non-implementation of negotiated peace agreements. Despite the absence of overt confrontation between government forces and the rebels after a bruising nine-month-long war, in which some 2,000 were killed, the security situation in the country is still very volatile (UN Security Council 2007). The country is awash in arms and crime is widespread (Integrated Regional Information Networks 2007). The fragile human security situation in the north of the country has been compounded by the almost complete absence of basic services and the fact that government administration in the area has not yet been restored.

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