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Matters arising

Mar 2, 2011, 11:57 AM

It is still incomprehensible that while the rest of the world is fighting tooth and nail to contain the much talked about financial crises, and problems related to climate change affecting the world, people on the continent of Africa, in one way or the other, are engaged in wars and conflict.
From Tunisia to Egypt, Ivory Coast to Libya conflicts continued to rage unabated.

In Ivory Coast, incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo is still defying international calls to step down, after a disputed November 2010 poll, which was widely believed to have been won by his rival Alassan Ouattara.

Now, there are reports of gunfire erupting close to the centre of Ivory Coast’s commercial capital, Abidjan, on Monday, after a week of fighting in which a northern suburb was seized by insurgents who briefly knocked out the state TV and army communications transmitter.

The election was meant to heal divisions sown by a 2002-3 civil war that left the country divided into a rebel-run north and government-run south, but it has only worsened divisions.

In Libya, there are fears that the bloodiest Arab revolt may grow more violent. Thousands are said to be fleeing to neighbouring Tunisia, following increasing protests calling on President Maummar Gaddafi to step down.

Meanwhile, according to reports, the U.N. Security Council Saturday adopted a resolution on Libya including freezing Gaddafi’s assets, a travel ban and referring his regime’s brutal crackdown to the International Criminal Court.

Revolutions in neighbouring Tunisia and Egypt have helped to ignite resentment of four decades of what many referred to often as bloody political repression under Gaddafi, as well as his failure to use Libya’s oil wealth to tackle widespread poverty and lack of opportunity.

The people of Ivory Coast, Libya and the entire African continent yearn for peace, and nothing else.

We have lost many of our loved ones in such conflict situations, and any action that can create another trouble spot must be urgently tackled.

While we appreciate the efforts being made by the international community, we pray that the parties involved in all these conflicts will allow commonsense to prevail, so that their people can live in peace, progress and prosperity.

“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.”

Albert Einstein