The UN Security Council has renewed a threat of sanctions against rebels and government leaders in Ivory Coast but stopped short of taking action.Member nations have sent the warning to those trying to block an international peace plan for the country after four days of violent anti-UN protests.
Secretary General Kofi Annan said: “Those who are behaving this way ought to understand that the time will come when they may have to account for their acts and the destruction they are causing to their own society.”
At least five people have died in violence in several centres, although calm is now said to be slowly returning.
The protestors have been calling for the withdrawal of UN peacekeepers from Ivory Coast, which has been split into a government-held south and a rebel north since a civil war began in 2002.
Analysts say violence appears to have been coordinated by supporters of the country’s president, fearing the peace plan will reduce his powers. A new prime minister has been installed by mediators to lead the world’s top cocoa producer into elections by the end of October.