Bouake, Ivory Coast
Thousands of Ivorians packed a stadium this week to watch a pile of weapons go up in flames. “People of Ivory Coast, the war is over,” said President Laurent Gbagbo as he lit the bonfire. Ivory Coast’s civil war officially ended in March, when Gbagbo and rebel leader Guillaume Soro agreed to share power, but armed militias continue to menace the country. The destruction of weapons this week was an encouraging sign that disarmament is proceeding. The torch that lit the bonfire will travel around the country, Olympic-style, this month. Gbagbo is also giving out T-shirts that read “Flame of Peace, Bouake 2007, I was there.”
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