May 24, 2019

Ivory Coast End game: Gbagbo surrounded in Abijan

We will put up a picture of Laurent Gbagbo for this story as he is about to exit the international stage. See ya dude.

Forces loyal to Alassane Ouattara, the UN-backed President-elect of Ivory Coast are surrounding its main city of Abijan were President Gbagbo is holed up.

Some police units including their leader Edouard Kassarate and the head of the army Phillippe Mangou have defected from President Gbagbo and gone over to the Ouattara side.

United Nations officials have announced that UN troops in the country have now taken control of Abidjan airport, cutting off another measn of escape for Gbagbo who is alleged to have rigged last years presidential elections.

There are reports that armed supporters of Mr Gbagbo have been patrolling Abijan and setting up road blocks. It is unclear at this stage how much fight they will put up once the Ouattara forces start to enter the city.

Judging by the Gbagos forces rapid retreat before the latest rebel offensive, there seems little prospect of a protracted battle for Abijan.

Gunfire has been heard around the national television centre and there has been artillery and heavy machine gun fire reported in the northern suburbs.

The head of Mr Ouattara’s parallel government, Guillaume Soro, said Mr Gbagbo had only a few hours left in power.

“The game is over for Gbagbo. It is finished,” he told Reuters in Yamoussoukro, Ivory Coast’s capital which was captured yesterday.