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First intellectual output. Loyola Andalucia University

First intellectual output. Loyola Andalucia University

Ivory Coast

Cote d’Ivoire
The Ivory Coast is a West African State with an area of 320,763 km². The capital is Yamoussoukro. The population is 24.572.000 inhabitants. It is a heterogeneous population. The most common ethnic groups are the Anyi and the Baulè. Thanks to the decrease in child mortality due to the improved sanitary conditions and to the fight against serious endemic diseases, as well as to the increase in the birth rate, it is a country whose population is growing.
It is a multilingual country, with around 78 languages currently spoken (belonging to the five main branches of the Niger-Congo family). The official language is French, a legacy of the colonial period.
The religious composition of the country is divided between the traditional African religions, which still have many followers, Islam and Christianity. According to the Constitution, the Ivory Coast is a laic state and article 9 of the 2000 Constitution guarantees religious freedom. The country is divided into two religious-based country distribution: Islam is the dominant religion in the north, while Christianity in the south.
The climate is sub-equatorial and tropical. In the southern region there are heavy rains from May to July and from September to October; the temperatures are instead constantly high, with annual averages over 27 ºC. In the northern area, precipitation decreases and is concentrated between the months of May and October. Lastly, the northern area is characterized by significantly less abundant rainfall.
From an economic point of view, agriculture is in first place in terms of contribution to GDP. In addition to cocoa, for which the country is the world's largest producer, Côte d'Ivoire is the leading exporter of palm oil and the eighth largest world exporter of rubber. Other important Ivorian cultures are coffee, cotton and cashews.

Political and social instability
Côte d'Ivoire became independent of France in 1960. The political system is that of a presidential Republic. The President of the Republic is elected by direct suffrage for 5 years, as is the National Assembly. The Supreme Court, the highest degree of judgment of the country, is made up of 4 sections: constitutional, judicial, administrative and accounting. The death penalty was abolished in 2002. Education is free at all levels, and compulsory from 7 to 13 years.
Few other West African countries have struggled to preserve their influence and power as much as the Ivory Coast, one of the region's most economically and demographically strong nations. After the civil war of 2002-2007, the conflict resumed again with the presidential elections of 2010. Violent clashes broke out between the supporters of the official winner, Alassane Ouattara, a Muslim, and his defeated opponent and predecessor in power, Laurent Gbagbo, a Christian. More than 3,000 people died fighting, while hundreds of thousands were driven from their homes.
The Ivory Coast, has been the protagonist of a civil war lasting more than 10 years (from 2002 to 2011), in which about 3,000 people died. On December 25, 1999, General Guei took out Bedie, who was forced to flee to France. After the bloodless acquisition, Guei formed a new government and promised to hold open elections in late 2000. In the 2000 election, the nomination for president of Ouattara was rejected by the Ivorian Supreme Court for "dubious nationality". On that occasion, the Supreme Court of the General disqualified all the candidates of the 2 major parties establishing the criteria that all candidates had to have 2 Ivorian parents and not be in possession of a nationality of another country.
Guèi and Gbagbo remained in the race, and Guèi won. He proclaimed himself victorious, until Gbagbo's supporters did not rise, forcing him to flee. And that was how Gbagbo won the election. The conflict broke out on September 19, 2002, following a failed attempt to oust Laurent Gbagbo. The fighting led the Ivory Coast to divide between rebels and government allies. Deep fractures persist since then. The north of the country was organized with a rebel army led by the party supporting the current president, Alassane Ouattara and Gbagbo was forced to abandon power in 2011, after refusing to accept the victory of President Alassane Ouattara in the presidential elections of 2010. Ouattara had already been a special adviser to the director general of the International Monetary Fund, vice-governor of the Central Bank of the West African States and prime minister from 1990 to 1993, function created specifically with an amendment to the Constitution on 7 November 1990.
The reasons of the civil war in Ivory Coast are to be sought in the control of the riches of the territory, control that is claimed by the different ruling groups relying on membership of one of the 60 different ethnic groups. Moreover, the economy of the country depends almost entirely on the export of raw materials and this has always triggered the interests of large multinational companies, ready to finance the various groups, to ensure control of the market. In short, it is a country that has become a benchmark for external interests, with France, the United States and China.
For these reasons, many Ivorian young people emigrate in looking for better job opportunities.
Today, the factors that mainly determine emigration, especially for youth, are: the desire to build a better future for oneself and for one's family, social inequalities, youth unemployment and the vision promoted by the media of a West where 'it's work, lack of trust in the political system. Illegal immigration in Côte d'Ivoire is a recent phenomenon. The difficulty of obtaining entry visas into Europe (long times, complex procedures and high costs) is especially important.
The authorities limited the exercise of rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, calling for provisions that criminalized peaceful protests and other forms of non-violent expression. Over 70 people, most of them opposition members, were arrested and released after a few hours or days.
The rate of corruption is extremely high, which can be deduced from the lack of equality before the application of the law in the famous case involving the current President. Only those who were suspected of being supporters of former President Gbagbo (opponent of the current President Ouattara) were tried for serious human rights violations committed during and after the 2010 elections. On the contrary, troops loyal to the president Ouattara, who were responsible for serious violence, including the killing of over 800 people in Duèkouè in April 2011, and another 13 people in an internally displaced camp at Nahibly in July 2012, were not processed. Some of the soldiers had been identified by the families of the victims; although the killings were investigated, no one had been punished by law by the end of the year.

Asylum seekers flows
In 2016, according to official UNHCR data, the total number of asylum applications made by Ivorian citizens amounted to 14,318. Of these, 7,456, equal to 52%, applied in Italy, followed by France (2,548, equal to 18%) and Germany (1,659, equal to 12%).

Download this file (report-ivory_coast.pdf)Report (pdf)[Italian language]


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