West African Bank freezes Ivorian leader's funds

The West African regional central bank cut access to funds by Incumbent Ivory Coast leader Laurent Gbagbo.

West African Bank freezes Ivorian leader's funds

The West African regional central bank cut access to funds by Incumbent Ivory Coast leader Laurent Gbagbo.

The United Nations General Assembly, adding to international pressure on Gbagbo to concede defeat in a Nov. 28 election, recognised challenger Alassane Ouattara as Ivory Coast's legitimate president.

Heads of state of the West African regional body ECOWAS will hold an emergency meeting in Abuja on Friday, the second in two weeks, to discuss the crisis in the world's top cocoa producing nation.

Most Ivory Coast newspapers on Friday said the country was keenly waiting the outcome of the meeting and some said the heads of states could decide on whether to send in the bloc's intervention force, ECOMOG. ECOWAS officials have declined comment ahead of the meeting.

Ministers from the Central Bank of the West African Economic and Monetary Union said late on Thursday that the bank would no longer recognize Gbagbo's authority as president, and that access to funds would only be given to Ouattara's "legitimate government".

The move follows a World Bank decision on Wednesday to freeze some $800 million in committed financing.

Gbagbo's Finance Minister Desire Dalo did not comment when reached by telephone late on Thursday. A spokesman for Ouattara's government said the decision by the central bank was "a very important move toward controlling the economic power."


Agencies

Last Mod: 24 Aralık 2010, 18:13
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