Liberia and Cote D’Ivoire have signed a Joint Communiqué on the heels of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s friendly and working visit to the West African nation.
According to a dispatch from Abidjan, at the invitation President Alassane Ouattara, President Johnson Sirleaf paid a friendly and working visit to Côte d’Ivoire, which took place from 7 to 8 September 2017.
The Communiqué added – the President of Côte d’Ivoire welcomed the unremitting efforts of the Liberian Head of State for Peace and Concord in Liberia and praised the courageous institutional and economic reforms undertaken by his illustrious host, contributing to the reconciliation and reconstruction of her country.
He expressed his admiration to the President of Liberia for the democratic advances in Liberia and congratulated her on her leadership and positive actions during her tenure as President of the Economic Community of West African States, (ECOWAS).
President Ouattara reiterated his sincere thanks to Johnson Sirleaf for the honor bestowed on him and on Côte d’Ivoire, conferring on him the highest honor of Liberia during the tribute ceremony held in Monrovia on 15 July 2017.
For her part, President Sirleaf welcomed the unwavering commitment of the Ivorian people and government to peace and democracy and praised Côte d’Ivoire’s remarkable economic recovery.
She welcomed the exemplary leadership and ongoing commitment of the Ivorian Head of State to regional integration, peace and security in West Africa.
According to the Communiqué, during the visit, President Sirleaf and her Ivorian counterpart had a working session – extended to the two delegations and a one-on-one meeting in an atmosphere of cordial understanding and perfect convergence of views; as well as gave a broad overview of bilateral issues, as well as current events in the sub-region, Africa and in the rest of the world.
On a bilateral level, the Ivorian President highlighted the exceptional quality of the relations of fraternity and solidarity that exist between their two countries, which are united by history, geography and culture.
The Communiqué recognized that at the holding of the Commission, eight (08) Cooperation Agreements were signed, in particular in the fields of agriculture, fisheries resources, wildlife and forestry resources, town planning and urban development, energy, education, technical education and vocational training, maritime delimitation and the extension of the outer limits of the continental shelf.
Both leaders welcomed the signing of the revised Agreement for the Establishment of the Main Joint Commission, which reflects the new dynamic of cooperation between the two countries.
Presidents Ouattara and Johnson Sirleaf also welcomed the establishment of the Joint Council of Traditional chiefs and elders of the Liberian and Ivoirian border areas, whose resolutions, resulting from the Zwedru and Guiglo meetings, have helped to consolidate social cohesion and peace in this border area. They recommended the effective implementation of the various resolutions adopted during these conclaves.
They also called for the actual resumption of the Ivorian-Liberian games, factors of rapprochement of the youth of the two countries.
President Ouattara expressed his gratitude to the Government and the people of Liberia for the hospitality and assistance offered to the Ivorian refugees on their territory.
He reiterated the appeal made to the Ivorian refugees in Liberia and the other States of the sub-region for their return to Côte d’Ivoire by reaffirming the Government’s commitment to facilitate their reintegration into their country.
At the sub-regional level, the two Heads of State expressed satisfaction with the positive role played in conflicts resolution by the Organizations, notably ECOWAS and the Mano River Union. They welcomed the establishment of the Joint Security and Confidence Restoration Units (JSCRU) as part of the conflict resolution approach and the consolidation of border peace and security, and they called for a greater participation and involvement of the population in this project.
They also reaffirmed their commitment to a supportive Africa capable of effectively addressing security challenges, including terrorism, cybercrime, maritime piracy and drug trafficking, while calling on the international community to unite in order to permanently eradicate these plagues.
The two Heads of State reaffirmed their solidarity with the people of Sierra Leone, deeply mourned by landslides and reiterated their strong condemnation of the recent terrorist attacks in Africa and elsewhere in the world, notably in Mali, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Iraq and Spain.
At the international level, the two Heads of State welcomed their convergence of views on multilateral issues and agreed that their two countries should further harmonize their policies in international fora particularly in view of the presence of Côte d’Ivoire in the UN Security Council for the period of 2018-2019.
Meanwhile, in recognition of her countless actions in favor of peace, stability and social cohesion in Côte d’Ivoire, the sub region and in Africa, President Ouattara elevated to the Dignity of Grand-Cross in the Ivorian National Order on President Johnson Sirleaf on the occasion of the dinner offered in her honor. President Sirleaf used the visit tour the facility of a Timber Processing Plant.
At the end of her visit, the Liberian leader expressed sincere thanks to the President Ouattara, Government and people of Côte d’Ivoire for the warm and fraternal welcome and the genuine African hospitality reserved for her, as well as for the accompanying delegation.
She then expressed thanks particularly for the special honor that was bestowed upon her by raising her to the highest Ivorian distinction.
President Sirleaf expressed the conviction that her visit to Côte d’Ivoire will further strengthen the close and fraternal relations that so happily exist between the two countries and peoples.