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Last Updated: Sunday, 7 November, 2004, 00:32 GMT
UN condemns Ivory Coast attacks
By Susannah Price
BBC correspondent at the United Nations

UN peacekeepers in Ivory Coast
Some 10,000 UN and French peacekeepers are in Ivory Coast
The UN Security Council has condemned the bombing raid in the Ivory Coast carried out by the military in which nine French peacekeepers were killed.

After an emergency meeting, a statement was released calling for an immediate end to all military operations.

The Security Council also backed action by the French, who destroyed two government planes after the air strike.

The French ambassador to the UN has called for an arms embargo against the Ivory Coast government.

There are some 10,000 French and UN peacekeepers in the Ivory Coast, most along the ceasefire line dividing the rebel-held north from the government-held south.

The Security Council wasted no time in condemning the attack against the French peacekeepers and other recent air strikes in the rebel-held north.

The unanimously-agreed statement demanded an end to all military operations and confirmed French and UN peacekeepers were authorised to use all necessary means to carry out their mandate.

Arms embargo

When asked about the French attack on Ivorian government planes, US ambassador to the UN, John Danforth, said they understood France would defend its troops and citizens when attacked.

The emergency meeting was called by the French ambassador to the UN, Jean-Marc de la Sabliere.

Kofi Annan speaks to reporters after a Security Council meeting on the situation in the Ivory Coast
Mr Annan helped broker a peace deal in July between the two sides
He said he wanted an arms embargo imposed against the Ivory Coast government.

The French are drawing up a resolution to follow the statement.

The government in the Ivory Coast started carrying out air raids on Thursday on two cities in the rebel-held north, crossing the ceasefire line agreed last year.

The attacks were condemned by the UN Security Council as grave and worrying.

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan - who helped broker talks in July at which both sides recommitted themselves to a peace deal - also attended the emergency meeting.




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