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Page last updated at 12:39 GMT, Friday, 4 December 2009

Ivory Coast rivals agree to hold delayed vote in 2010

Presidents President Laurent Gbagbo (l) of Ivory Coast and Blaise Compaore of Burkina faso (r)
Burkina Faso President Compaore (r) has been leading the peace talks

Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo and his main political rivals have agreed to hold the postponed November presidential election early in 2010.

The poll should now be held in February or March of next year, according to mediators, after a meeting of regional countries in Burkina Faso.

The vote has been put off several times since Mr Gbagbo's term ended in 2005.

The world's biggest cocoa producer is slowly recovering after being cut in half by a civil war for several years.

The former rebel New Forces seized northern Ivory Coast in 2002.

They are now sharing power with Mr Gbagbo under a United Nations-backed peace deal.

New Forces leader Prime Minister Guillaume Soro, former President Henri Konan Bedie and former Prime Minister Alassane Ouattara agreed the new date with Mr Gbagbo.

However, the key question of who is eligible to vote has still not been settled.

The AFP news agency reports that the status of some one million people has not been agreed by the electoral commission.

Some 5.3 million people have been registered, AFP reports.



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