The United States remains committed to supporting free, transparent, and inclusive elections in Côte d’Ivoire. The historic elections upcoming are opportunities for Côte d’Ivoire to continue on its peaceful path towards prosperity. It is up to the Ivoirian people to decide the future and leadership of their country. The Constitutional Council of Côte d’Ivoire will decide the so-called “third term” issue. We continue to believe that regular, democratic transitions of power yield more accountability, stronger institutions, and more constructive citizen participation in the political process.
Freedom of expression, assembly, and association are at the heart of a functioning democracy. Adherence to these democratic norms allows Ivoirians to engage in political dialogue and support the candidates, parties, or ideas that they choose. The impartial application of all laws, including those governing freedom of expression, assembly, and association, is also essential to a credible electoral process, to good governance in general, and to the country’s continued post-conflict transition.
Repression and intimidation have no place in a democracy. The United States urges all parties, groups and individuals to refrain from violence and hateful/divisive speech and to choose dialogue to find peaceful solutions to their disagreements. We urge security forces to respect and safeguard the rights of all citizens, including to participate in peaceful demonstrations. We call upon the Government to investigate fully all deaths associated with recent demonstrations and to make the results of these investigations public. We call on everyone in Côte d’Ivoire to adhere to the rule of law, and on the Ivoirian authorities to ensure fair judicial processes.