In pictures: Ivory Coast’s plush, empty capital


Outside the main gate, Blanchard sells peanuts and coconuts to tourists and pilgrims.

"Having the basilica here is really good. Thanks to the basilica, we eat often," he says.

"I've got my school diploma but I don't have a job. Instead of sitting at home doing nothing, I can look after this coconut stand for my sister.

"Thanks to this church, we meet lots of tourists. If it wasn't here, French and American people wouldn’t be here."

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