Minister Dlamini Zuma to lead SA Delegation to Côte d'Ivoire

Cape Town - South African Foreign Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, will depart South Africa on Thursday 7 September for Abidjan where she will lead a African delegation to the meeting of the International Working Group on Cote d' Ivoire on Friday 8 September 2006 in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire

Minister Dlamini Zuma's participation in the IWG comes within the context of South Africa's commitment to support the leadership and peoples of Côte d'Ivoire in their efforts to find a political solution to their current political challenges.

In this regard, this session of the IWG follows the recent visit to Côte d'Ivoire by South African Defence Minister Mosioua Lekota and Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad as representatives of the mediator, President Thabo Mbeki in August. The delegation held extensive discussions with President Gbagbo, Prime Minister Konan Banny and the leadership of the FPI during which briefings were received regarding the progress made in the implementation of the Roadmap and preparations for elections as well as the challenges being experienced.

The forthcoming session of the IWG also comes ahead of the meeting to be convened by the United Nations Secretary-General, Mr Kofi Annan, on the margins of the Sixty-first Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in September 2006. During this meeting the Secretary-General and key roleplayers will consider reports by the Mediation and representatives of the United Nations, the African Union, the European Union, International Monetary Fund and the Independent Electoral Commission regarding the status of preparations for the elections.

The 10th session of the IWG will receive reports on the:

  • Preparations for the scheduled elections on 30 October 2006;
  • Progress regarding the national certification issue; and
  • Progress regarding the DDR process including the integration of rebel forces into legitimate structures and the disarmament of militias.

Upon conclusion of the visit to Cote d' Ivoire, Minister Dlamini Zuma will proceed to Brazil ahead of President Thabo Mbeki to attend the inaugural session of the historic strategic Summit of the India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) scheduled for 12-13 September 2006.

Issued by Ronnie Mamoepa on 082 990 4853

Department of Foreign Affairs
Private Bag X152

6 September 2006

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