New Ivory Coast citizens no longer “live like ghosts”

Published: 11/Sep/2014
Source: Thompson Reuters Foundation

Ivory Coast has some 700,000 stateless people within its borders, one of the biggest stateless populations in the world

By Misha Hussain

TENKODOUGOU, Ivory Coast, Sept 11 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Three years after the civil war, patriotic sentiment is running high on Independence Day in Ivory Coast. But in seven, small hamlets hidden in the lush green cocoa fields of the central belt, the villagers are keener than most to prove their loyalty to the nation.

Their ancestral roots lie in Burkina Faso, and people in this community had until recently faced discrimination for almost 80 years. Locals beat them and accused them of being foreigners, police restricted their movement and courts denied them justice.

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Themes: Discrimination, Ethnic/Racial/Religious, Statelessness
Regions: West Africa, Côte d'Ivoire
Year: 2014