EU approves visa bans on 59 Ivorians linked to Gbagbo
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The European Union approved sanctions Friday against 59 people linked to Côte d'Ivoire’s incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo, who is defying global demands to step down after contested presidential elections at the end of November
Those targeted will not be granted EU visas, a diplomat told the AFP news agency.
Thirty-two men and women who are part of Gbagbo’s “illegitimate government” are on the list, as are six members of the Constitutional council who participated in the “validation of false results.
Also on the list are the head of the army, the head of the port of Abidjan, newspaper editors, and the presidents of groups accused of inciting hatred and violence.
Two other people who were on the list were removed after they acknowledged the authority of Gbagbo’s rival, Alassane Ouattara, who is recognised by most other countries as the President of Côte d'Ivoire.
A first series of European sanctions were put in place last week, with visa bans on 19 people, including on Gbagbo himself and his wife.
The latest sanctions come as Ouattara has given Gbagbo a midnight deadline to leave power, without specifying the consequences.
If Gbagbo quits before the start of the New Year, he will "have no worries", said Ouattara's prime minister Guillaume Soro.
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