UN Security Council deeply concerned over Gabon violence

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United Nations, Sep 2 (IANS) The UN Security Council expressed its “deep concern” over the violence in Gabon following the August 27 presidential election.

“The members of the Security Council called upon all candidates, their supporters, political parties and other political actors to remain calm, refrain from violence or other provocations and resolve any electoral disputes through established constitutional and legal mechanisms,” Gerard Jacobus van Bohemen, New Zealand’s ambassador to UN, who holds the rotating council presidency this month, said on Thursday.

The council president made the remarks after a closed meeting of the 15-nation UN body, at which the council heard a briefing by the UN special representative for Central Africa Abdoulaye Bathily on the situation in Gabon.

The council members “stressed the importance of a transparent and impartial process, in compliance with the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance,” the president said.

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Meanwhile, the council members “expressed their full support for” Bathily and “his efforts to calm the situation and peacefully resolve the contentious issues emanating from the electoral process,” he said.

On Wednesday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged all concerned political leaders in Gabon to maintain peace and security in the Central African country after the announcement of the provisional results of the presidential election.

Violence and broke out in Gabon on Wednesday after the national elections commission declared the incumbent President Ali Bongo won the election.

Bongo claimed 49.8 per cent of the votes versus challenger Jean Ping’s 48.2 per cent, reports said.



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