The Elders

Press release

The Elders to visit Côte d'Ivoire to encourage healing and national reconciliation

Kofi Annan, Desmond Tutu and Mary Robinson to visit Abidjan 1-2 May

Next week three Elders will travel to Côte d'Ivoire, where many civilians are still afraid to return to their homes following months of widespread civil conflict. The Elders hope to encourage a process of national reconciliation in the country.

pdf icon  Téléchargez ce communiqué en français.

Three members of The Elders will travel to Abidjan this weekend to encourage healing and dialogue on national reconciliation. The Elders' delegation will be led by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He will be joined by Chair of The Elders, Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa, and former President of Ireland Mary Robinson.

The Elders will meet President Alassane Ouattara, representatives of the new government, leaders of political parties, and members of civil society organisations, as well as representatives of UN and other organisations and the diplomatic community in Abidjan.

Kofi Annan  

Kofi Annan said:

“Although a political handover has finally taken place and the election results implemented, the situation is still fragile. Ivorians have suffered terribly as a result of the conflict. Many are still afraid to return to their homes.

“There is only one Côte d'Ivoire and the leaders and the people must understand that. The cloak of government must cover all.

“Ivorians have no option but to reconcile, heal and live together.”

Desmond Tutu  

Desmond Tutu said:

“Our hearts go out to the people of Côte d'Ivoire. We hope that by meeting and listening to the people and their leaders we can help to encourage a process of healing.

“Ivorians will have to find their own way to do this, and it will take time. Finding a way to reconciliation requires patience and courage, but I am hopeful that the country and its people will find a way forward together.

“In South Africa we learned the value of such a process, and we hope that Côte d'Ivoire will deliver safety to all its people, regardless of their origins.”

Mary Robinson  

Mary Robinson said:

“It is particularly important that women are heard in this process and that they have a place at the table at all levels of government and society.

“Successful nations draw on the talents of all their citizens: men and women, diverse ethnicities, a range of skills and knowledge.

“I urge the people of Côte d'Ivoire to embrace their diversity as the first important step to reconciliation.”


Media inquiries: media@theElders.org.

Sign-up to receive all press releases

Comments

Please read our moderation policy before commenting

  • All comments posted on www.theElders.org will be moderated before publication.
  • In making comments, please be constructive and treat others with respect.
  • Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, inflammatory statements or accusations, personal attacks, discriminatory or abusive language will not be posted.
  • Links: Please do link to other relevant sites and articles to enrich the debate. Please do not link to inappropriate or offensive websites or use signature links in your post.
The Elders are independent global leaders, brought together by Nelson Mandela, who offer their collective influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity.

Sign up to receive monthly newsletters from The Elders.

We will occasionally send you other special updates and news, but we'll never share your email address with third parties.

Visit the archive to see our past newsletters.

The Elders website uses cookies. Click here to accept the Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy when visiting this site.