EU visa bans on Ivory Coast President, his wife, and 17 other officials

42800.jpegThe European Union will decide this week whether to impose an asset freeze and a visa ban on Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo, his wife, and 17 other officials, an EU spokeswoman said.

"There is an agreement on the expert level on the list for the visa ban," Maja Kocijancic, a spokeswoman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, said today by phone from Brussels, according to BusinessWeek.

The visa ban applies to 19 Ivorians in all, including Mr Gbagbo's wife Simone, his security adviser, military chiefs, the president of the Constitutional Court and the director-general of RTI, the state broadcaster.

It is expected to be followed by an EU asset freeze and targeted sanctions on Mr Gbagbo and his inner circle by the United States which, along with most of the international community backs his rival Alassane Ouattara as the election winner.

Commentators said the sanctions were merely "symbolic" and would make little difference to Mr Gbagbo, who travels rarely and is not financially-oriented, reports.


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