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05.03.2020 Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast president says will not run for third term

By AFP
President Alassane Ouattara had previously kept Ivorians guessing over his political future.  By Ludovic MARIN (AFP/File)
LISTEN MAR 5, 2020
President Alassane Ouattara had previously kept Ivorians guessing over his political future. By Ludovic MARIN (AFP/File)

Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara said on Thursday he would not run in October's election, ending months of speculation over whether he would seek a third term.

October's election is a major challenge for the Ivory Coast after its 2010-2011 ballot ended in violence between political rivals that killed 3,000 people.

"I would like to solemnly announce that I will not be a candidate in the October 31, 2020 presidential election and I will transfer power to the younger generation," Ouattara said in a speech to Congress.

Ouattara, first elected in 2010 and then re-elected in 2015, had kept Ivorians guessing over his political future, saying last year that he could run again if his traditional rivals were candidates.

Ouattara in 2010-11 ousted the then-president, Laurent Gbagbo, who refused to step down after losing elections in a standoff that triggered violent street clashes.

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