>Liberia: Ivorian Government Delegation Presents Special Message to President Sirleaf

>Source: All Africa

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has renewed Liberia’s commitment to peaceful co-existence between Liberia and Cote d’Ivoire and within the sub-region. The President reiterated that Liberia will not allow its territory to be used for any insurgency against Cote d’Ivoire or any neighboring country. The President said Liberia will remain vigilant at its borders, ensuring that those who attempt to undermine the security of the sub-region will be dealt with under the laws of the country.

An Executive Mansion release says the President was speaking on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 when a two-man delegation from Cote d’Ivoire delivered a special message from President Alassane Ouattara.

The President assured the delegation that she will continue to exert all efforts to help stabilize the situation in Cote d’Ivoire, allowing all Ivoirians to live in peace and harmony in a democratic environment.

Liberia and Cote d’Ivoire, the President said, are all one people. “We share your plight and concerns; we must therefore do whatever we can to allow peace to return to your country,” the current Chair of the Mano River Union told the visiting Ivorian delegation, which also included Mr. Gnamien Konan, the Minister for Public Service & Employment.

The head of the delegation, Mr. Banzio Dagobert, commended the President for her mediation in the Ivorian crisis. He also praised the President for her tolerance and understanding in accommodating Ivorian refugees at the borders. Mr. Dagobert, who now serves as Minister of Youth and Sports & Sanitation, spoke of the President’s support for the refugee population in Liberia. He made specific mention of her recent visit to refugee transit points in the Southeast of Liberia, where more than 5,000 Ivoirians have sought refuge. The delegation also lauded the Liberian leader for supporting the stance of ECOWAS and the African Union on the Ivorian crisis.

The delegation later met with inter-agency heads, including the Ministers of Justice and Internal Affairs as well as the Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission (LRRRC), Immigration and the Liberia National Police. Representatives from both countries discussed humanitarian and security concerns along the Ivorian-Liberian border, triggered by the influx of refugees fleeing the political crisis in Cote d’Ivoire.

The Ivorian delegation has, meanwhile, extended to President Johnson Sirleaf an invitation to attend the inauguration of President-elect Alassane Ouattara in Abidjan, on a date to be announced soon.

The visit by the Ivorian delegation is its first official visit outside Cote d’Ivoire since the capture of President Laurent Gbagbo.


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