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Ouattara says no risk of civil war in Ivory Coast

PARIS (Reuters) - Military intervention in Ivory Coast does not mean the country will descend into civil war, presidential claimant Alassane Ouattara said on Wednesday.

In his first television interview since the crisis unfolded, Ouattara told France 24 he preferred a peaceful solution to the crisis, but dismissed negotiating with incument Laurent Gbagbo saying he had to “leave power.”

“I think he will be responsible for the situation that he will face. Military intervention does not mean that the Ivory Coast will ignite,” he said.

“All that needs to be done, as has been done in other African countries, is to come and get Gbagbo and remove him from the presidential palace.”

Ouattara said Gbgabo was trying to buy time to recruit mercenaries to kill Ivorians and smuggle money out of the country.”

Reporting by Vicky Buffery and John Irish; Editing by Matthew Jones