IPI HomeEventsSpeakers EventsLøj: Elections "Test Case" for Liberia

 

print print  |  share share back back

Speaker Events - Friday, March 18, 2011

Løj: Elections "Test Case" for Liberia

Ellen Margrethe Løj, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the UN Mission in Liberia, said at an IPI event on March 18th that the fall elections in Liberia "would be a test case for the Liberians’ willingness to continue on the road to sustainable peace and development."

"These elections have to be run 100 percent by the Liberians themselves, and in accordance with the Liberian constitution," she said, though "not without support from the international community."

She warned that the elections—and Liberia's stability—could be compromised by the fraught situation in Côte d'Ivoire. The crisis there has also created a refugee emergency in Liberia.

"Ivorians are fleeing to Liberia, and we have now over 90,000 refugees in a very limited area bordering Côte d'Ivoire," she said. “We are now getting reports about tension building between the host communities and the refugees."

In addition, she said, "there are a lot of weapons around in Côte d'Ivoire," and many of them are ending up in Liberia.

According to the UN High Commission for Refugees, the UN mission has stepped up its military and police presence along the 700-kilometer-long border. Agence France-Presse reported that hundreds of mercenaries from Liberia have crossed the border into Côte d’Ivoire and are committing atrocities there.

"We need all the focus we can have on finding a political solution in Côte d'Ivoire, she said. "We need that for the people of Côte d’Ivoire, but we need it for the whole West African region."

Ms. Løj noted that historically crises in West Africa quickly spill over into neighboring countries. "We should do everything in our power to avoid that happening again," she said.

 Read transcript

The Global Observatory

India-US Cooperation Grows With Obama Visit
The visit is particularly important for efforts related to stability and security in the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean regions.

Key Global Events to Watch in January
A list of key upcoming meetings and events with implications for global affairs.

2015: Ten Multilateral Events to Watch This Year
A list of ten events that are likely to impact international peace and security in 2015, compiled by IPI’s Francesco Mancini.

The Global Observatory, produced by IPI, provides timely analysis on peace and security issues, interviews with leading policymakers, interactive maps, and more.

Recent Events

January 20, 2015
Mongolian Foreign Policy Between ''Two Giants''
On January 20, Mongolia’s new Foreign Minister Purevsuren Lundeg visited the IPI Vienna office and gave an informal briefing on Mongolia’s contemporary foreign policy priorities and challenges.

January 20, 2015
Dutch FM Koenders: ''The Security Council Has to Change''
Speaking to an overflow IPI audience on January 20th, Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders acknowledged how far the United Nations has come since its inception 70 years ago but said that the organization still “has a lot of growing up to do.”

December 15, 2014
Fathi: Iran and the Struggle Between Hardliners and Reformers
Discussing her new book The Lonely War: One Woman’s Account of the Struggle for Modern Iran at IPI on December 15th, author Nazila Fathi said that 35 years after the revolution, Iran is divided between hardliners and a large moderate middle class, but admitted that it is still unclear which of the two sides will gain the upper hand.

View More