Alain Juppe replied by stating that its staff had followed “closely” in recent weeks, the events that took place in Djibouti, “especially after the events of February.” He revealed that France’s ambassador to Djibouti, Rene Forceville, had “inquired of the authorities of the situation of opposition leaders and activists of human rights”. Affirming that Paris was in close contact with the Djibouti authorities on the subject, Alain Juppe tried to reassure opponents’ counsel, stating that “France is vigilant in respect of human rights, particularly freedom of exp ression” in Djibouti as “elsewhere”. In conclusion, he made a promise to Mr. Morice: “We are also very attentive to the conduct of the presidential election next month, we want free and transparent”.
A wish that will be difficult to achieve, however, the opposition boycotted the poll after failing to present themselves in good conditions. The only competitor of the incumbent president will be April 8 and a former official of his regime, the former chairman of the Constitutional Council, Mohamed Warsama Ragueh.
(In the drafting of the Indian Ocean Newsletter: I know it’s not very legal, but we can not afford to pay all your items, and your information has been vital in the media blockade imposed by our system)