Ouattara coalition sweeps Ivorian polls

December 16, 2011 04:49


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ABIDJAN - Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara's ruling coalition swept parliamentary elections with 80 percent of the seats, according to provisional results issued early on Friday, strengthening his hand in governing the war-scarred West African state.

Ouattara's ruling RDR party took 127 of the National Assembly's 255 seats while his allied PDCI party took 77 seats, according to results from the Dec. 11 poll announced by election commission chief Youssouf Bakayoko.

Bakayoko said turnout was 36 percent, slightly higher than in Ivory Coast's last parliamentary poll in 2000, despite a boycott by the main opposition party allied to former leader Laurent Gbagbo, now facing war crimes charges at The Hague.

Ouattara won a November 2010 presidential election but was only able to take power in April after fighters supporting him invaded the economic capital Abidjan and arrested Gbagbo, who had refused to step down.

Some 3,000 people were killed in the conflict and more than 1 million displaced. Ouattara has said his top priorities are reconciling Ivorians and rebuilding the economy.

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