Communist Party of the Workers of France

Paris, October 1, 2002

No to the War in the Ivory Coast
No to Imperialist Interference
The French Zone of Africa Has Lasted Too Long

A new war is wracking the Ivory Coast, practically cutting the country in two and causing hundreds of deaths and destruction hitting the poorest people the hardest.

Several foreign armies have been deployed, including several hundred French troops. For the first time since the country's independence, U.S. Special Forces have intervened, challenging the character of the African neo-colonies as "private hunting grounds" of French imperialism. This initiative is part of the policy of redeployment of U.S. forces on a world scale that has turned the African continent into an area of large-scale destabilization and redivision of spheres of influence among the different imperialist powers. This began with the war against Afghanistan and is continuing with the planned war against Iraq.

The regime of Gbagbo, which has been weakened and is disavowed by a significant part of the population, has denounced what it calls a foreign plot against the country and is hunting down the foreign population living in large numbers in the Ivory Coast. This policy of xenophobia, carried out for years by all the Ivoirian leaders when they are in difficulty, has always caused hundreds of deaths, plunged thousands of families into misery and fostered the divisions among the people on ethnic and religious lines. A civil war is looming and the specter of massacres such as those that covered Rwanda in blood is haunting the country, which cannot live without the labor of millions of foreign nationals.

L. Gbagbo would like to take advantage of this putsch attempt by ridding himself of his principal opponents. General Gueï and his family have been assassinated and A. Ouattara, who has sought refuge in the France embassy, has been accused of being the mastermind behind the putsch.

The extent of the rebellion, the ease with which the mutineers have taken control of a large part of the country, shows the isolation of the Gbagbo regime. At the same time, this coup d'etat seems to have no "leader" and to have no other objective than the overthrow of Gbagbo.

After some hesitation, the French authorities have decided to prevent the success of the coup by reinforcing their military forces in the country, all the while looking for a compromise solution with the help of governments from neighboring countries, a solution which may lead to isolating Gbagbo.

We denounce the putsch attempts, which have never resulted in anything more than replacing one clique by another. We denounce the attempts to destabilize the Ivory Coast by neighboring countries.

We denounce the campaign of xenophobia, based on so-called "Ivoirité" that has raged for years, nourished by the Ivoirian authorities themselves, which deprives entire sectors of the population of all political rights and which makes nationals of other countries the scapegoats for all crises and difficulties.

We denounce the interference of the imperialist powers, in first place French imperialism which, far from contributing to a democratic solution favorable to peace and understanding among countries and peoples, only sharpens tensions and fights among clans.

At the basis of this political crisis, there is an economic and social crisis which is derived from totally unequal relations that the imperialist metropolises impose on the oppressed countries. The continuing fall in prices of raw materials orchestrated by the monopolies of international trade, the agro-alimentary firms and the big mining companies, is plunging these countries into stagnation. The structural adjustment plans of the IMF and World Bank end up forcing these economies to their knee and throwing the people into misery. Without breaking with this policy, no government will be able to satisfy the legitimate aspirations of the African peoples.

Together, people of the imperialist metropolises and oppressed peoples, we must fight this system of domination, misery and war

The French zone of Africa has lasted too long; solidarity with the African peoples.

Communist Party of the Workers of France
15 Cité Popincourt
75011 Paris

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