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Pascal Affi N’Guessan, former Prime Minister of Laurent Gbagbo, was received by Vice-President Daniel Kablan Duncan. On the agenda, the question of the return to Côte d'Ivoire of the former president.
With our correspondent in Abidjan, Pierre Pinto
Laurent Gbagbo is still awaiting the decision of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on his request for full release. His former Prime Minister, Pascal Affi N’Guessan, who has met him on several occasions those last weeks after years of quarrels, had wished to be received by Alassane Ouattara to discuss in particular the return of the former president.
Pascal Affi N'Guessan was finally received by Vice-President Daniel Kablan Duncan, in the presence of Patrick Achi, the Secretary General of the Presidency, Hamed Bakayoko, the Minister of Defense, and Sidiki Diakité, the Minister of the Administration of the territory. On the menu for the two-hour interview, the electoral environment nine months away from the presidential election, but above all the Gbagbo case:
" For us, it's about closing the book of our turbulence, our confrontations. And it is in the same spirit that we also posed the problem of President Laurent Gbagbo. At the moment, there is nothing to justify keeping it outside of Côte d'Ivoire, says Pascal Affi N’Guessan. The ICC has successfully acquitted, and it is up to the government to take back the case. It’s a message he sent to us. And we have come to see with the Head of State what needs to be done, so that the return of President Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé contributes to the dynamics of national reconciliation and reconstruction of our country. "
For Pascal Affi N’Guessan, this meeting has an important role because he considers that the Head of State has a role to play: He has expressed on several occasions that we are all brothers, that President Gbagbo is his brother. Beyond what the lawyers may have said there, we all know that the case is now political, that justice has finished its work and that justice is watching us – us politicians from Côte d 'Ivoire -, in relation to our ability to appropriate the national reconciliation process and to act in this direction. "
Read also: ICC: Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé in search of unconditional freedom
The other participants in the meeting did not wish to express themselves at the end. As for Pascal Affi N’Guessan, he still hopes to meet with the head of state.