May 7 - Ivory Coast's Alassane Ouattara takes his presidential oath in a tense ceremony conducted by an ally of ousted leader Laurent Gbagbo. Andrew Raven reports.
After five months of civil war, Ivory Coast welcomes its new president. Alassane Outtara was sworn in on Friday during a simple ceremony at the presidential palace in the capital Abidjan. The ceremony was conducted by Constitutional Council President Pual Yao N'Dre, a close ally of ousted leader Laurent Gbagbo. Outtara was the consensus winner of a popular vote last November. But Gbagbo refused to recognize the results, sparking a bloody civil war. More than a million people were displaced in the fighting, which saw French and UN forces throw their support behind Outtara. Gbabgo is now is prison awaiting trial for alleged crimes during the turmoil. But many of his loyalists remain in Abidjan, sparking fights in the streets. Dozens have died in clashes during the last several days. There are signs, though, that the country is slowly returning to normal. The world's biggest producer of cocoa will soon resume exports of the bean, which were halted by the conflict. Andrew Raven, Reuters