Côte d’Ivoire: France appoints a new ambassador to Abidjan one month away from a high-risk presidential election

His predecessor, Gilles Huberson, was recalled in September for an administrative investigation following accusations of harassment. The appointment of Jean-Christophe Belliard was ratified in the Council of Ministers in Yamoussoukro on Wednesday, September 29.
Jean-Christophe Belliard, 61, was until this summer Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service, in charge of political affairs. In short, number two in European Union diplomacy.
Previously, from 2012 to 2016, he held the position of Africa Director of the Quai d’Orsay after having been ambassador to Madagascar and Ethiopia for three years.
A seasoned diplomat, Jean-Christophe Belliard arrives in Abidjan in a very particular context, one month away from a high-risk presidential election. Since the announcement of his candidacy for a third term by Alassane Ouattara at the beginning of August, the regime and the opposition have been at loggerheads. An arm wrestling is underway, with the opposition wanting to discuss a number of reforms before going to any election. But postponing the election, the government does not want to hear about it.
This appointment of Jean-Christophe Belliard comes after the sudden recall of his predecessor, Gilles Huberson, accused of “sexist” behavior by several female employees, and subject to administrative investigation in Paris.

About Geraldine Boechat 2041 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia