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Ivorians, U.N. vetting December elections

Alassane Ouattara, president of the Ivory Coast, addresses the 66th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN on September 22, 2011 in New York City. UPI/Monika Graff
Alassane Ouattara, president of the Ivory Coast, addresses the 66th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN on September 22, 2011 in New York City. UPI/Monika Graff | License Photo

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast, Feb. 6 (UPI) -- Processing the results from December parliamentary elections in Ivory Coast will open the door to further progress, a U.N. envoy said.

Ivorians voted for members of the legislative assembly in December, close to a year after rival claims to the presidency pushed the country to the brink of civil war.

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Observers from the African Union noted the turnout for the 225-member legislative assembly was low compared to 2020 presidential elections.

Bert Koenders, the U.N. special envoy to Ivory Coast, said authorities were trying to certify the results from the December vote. He said partial certification was forthcoming in an effort to move the political process forward.

"We shall thus be able to move ahead with other things," he said in a statement. "There has been progress and that is positive."

November 2010 elections were meant to unite an Ivory Coast divided by earlier civil war. The ensuing political conflict ended with former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo awaiting trial at the International Criminal Court for alleged crimes against humanity.

Koenders told members of the U.N. Security Council last month that the political, economic and security situation in the country was improving though key challenges remain.

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"The root causes of instability and potential triggers of violence have remained," he said.

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