SECRETARY-GENERAL URGES TOGOLESE PARTIES
NEW YORK, 13 February (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement, originally issued in French on 12 February, was issued by the Office of the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:
On 11 February, the Secretary-General received Koffi Panou, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Togo, with whom he discussed the status of the forthcoming legislative elections. In that connection, he expressed his concern regarding the stalemate of the electoral process and the breakdown of the political consensus in Togo.
In the view of the Secretary-General, the unilateral amendment by the Government of the Electoral Code is not conducive to the creation of favourable conditions for the holding of the elections.
The Secretary-General recalled, moreover, that the report of the technical evaluation mission that visited Togo in August 2001, which was transmitted to the Government and to the opposition, had certainly not recommended the amendment of the Constitution or of the Electoral Code. The Secretary-General consequently asked all parties concerned to avoid any misinterpretation of that report.
The Secretary-General remains ready, in cooperation with all parties working to resolve the Togolese crisis, to seek ways and means conducive to the return of the political consensus and to the holding of the legislative elections in a climate of peace and security.
The Secretary-General also calls on all the Togolese parties to refrain from any action likely to disturb the social peace and remains convinced that the solution to the present deadlock lies in a return to the consensus of the Lomé Framework Agreement.
* *** *