- Title: Heavy gunfire in Ivory Coast as army tries to end mutiny
- Date: 15th May 2017
- Summary: ABIDJAN, IVORY COAST (MAY 15, 2017) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF MUTINEERS NEAR BARRICADE CLOSE TO AKOUEDO MILITARY CAMP IN ABIDJAN (AUDIO OF GUNFIRE) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE RUNNING IN STREET TAXI DRIVER WARNING OTHER DRIVERS NOT TO DRIVE FURTHER AND TURN BACK PEOPLE RUNNING IN STREET VARIOUS OF PEOPLE WALKING IN STREET (SOUNDBITE) (French) AKOUEDO RESIDENT, FOFANA ADAMA, SAYING: "I was told that they (military) are having demands again. All I can say is that they can negotiate, but without weapons. We are fed up, they need to see how we, the people, can live in peace that is all we want." VARIOUS OF CLOSED SHOPS VARIOUS OF PEOPLE WALKING IN STREET IN FRONT OF CLOSED SHOP CLOSE OF SHOP WITH LOCK ON DOOR PEOPLE IN STREET
- Embargoed: 29th May 2017 13:07
- Keywords: port closed businesses banks cocoa producer army mutiny gunfire Ivory Coast
- Location: ABIDJAN, IVORY COAST
- City: ABIDJAN, IVORY COAST
- Country: Ivory Coast
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA0016GY9BGN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Heavy gunfire erupted on Monday (May 15) in Ivory Coast's two largest cities of Abidjan and Bouake as the military said it pressed an operation to quash a four-day nationwide army mutiny over bonus payments, witnesses said.
Residents also reported gunfire in the port city and major cocoa hub of San Pedro.
More than 200 commercial trucks were stranded on the roadside after mutinous soldiers sealed off the southern entrance to Bouake, the epicentre of the revolt, on Monday, Reuters witnesses said.
London cocoa futures climbed to a five-week high on Monday due to the unrest in Ivory Coast, the world's top producer as businesses in the sector closed.
Most of a large column of troops spotted on Sunday (May 14) evening appeared to have withdrawn - suggesting any government operation was not yet fully under way.
In signs of the economic impact of the crisis, the banking association, the APBEF, ordered all banks to remain closed on Monday and many businesses at the port in Abidjan from which cocoa is exported were also closed.
The soldiers staged the revolt over delayed bonus payments promised by the government after a mutiny in January but not fully paid after a collapse in the price of cocoa, Ivory Coast's main export, caused a revenue crunch.
Ivory Coast has been touted as a post-war success story because it emerged from a 2002-2011 political crisis as one of the world's fastest growing economies under President Alassane Ouattara.
But it remains divided and a wave of mutinies that began earlier this year has exposed the lack of unity in a military assembled from former rebel and loyalist combatants.
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