Security Council imposes sanctions against Gbagbo; India supports UNSC resolution 1975; UNSC condemns attack against UN staff in Afghanistan
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  • The U.N. Security Council on March 30 unanimously demanded an immediate end to the escalating violence in Ivory Coast and imposed sanctions on Laurent Gbagbo, who refused to relinquish the presidency. The resolution demanded “an immediate end to the violence” and urged all Ivorian parties “to respect the will of the people and the election” of Alassane Ouattara as president. The latest resolution slapped a travel ban and asset freeze on Gbagbo, his wife Simone, and three other key supporters.1 The Security Council also condemned the use of Radiodiffusion Télévision Ivoirienne (RTI) and other media to incite discrimination, hostility, hatred and violence, including against UNOCI, and demanded that all parties abide “scrupulously” by their obligation to respect the safety of UNOCI and other UN personnel and ensure their freedom of movement.2

    India supported the Security Council resolution 1975 and also warned that peacekeepers should not be used as “instruments of regime change”. India’s representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri said that India was “seriously concerned” about the situation in the country and also expressed support to all efforts for the peaceful resolution of the problem. Puri said, “…we have supported the efforts of the ECOWAS (a regional west African body) and African Union to find a political solution leading to restoration of democracy and will of the Ivoirian people at the earliest. With that objective in mind, we have voted in favour of the resolution today (Thursday)”.3

    In other developments, the Security Council and the UN Secretary General strongly condemned the attack in Afghanistan which killed a number of people including three UN staff members. The Council issued a press statement condemning “all incitement to and acts of violence” and expressed their deep condolences to the families of the victims. The Council called on Afghan authorities to take ‘all possible steps’ to protect UN personnel and premises, and to bring the perpetrators of the attack to justice.4