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Ouattara names cabinet in Ivory Coast

From Eric Agnero, For CNN
President Alassane Ouattara's cabinet does not include members of the party of the former president, Laurent Gbagbo.
President Alassane Ouattara's cabinet does not include members of the party of the former president, Laurent Gbagbo.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • None of the 36 members is from Gbagbo's party
  • That could undermine any reconciliation
  • Hundreds of people died in the aftermath of November's vote
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Abidjan, Ivory Coast (CNN) -- President Alassane Ouattara got his cabinet Wednesday, after a six-month post-electoral crisis that claimed hundreds of lives.

The 36-member cabinet, still led by Prime Minister Soro Guillaume, was announced on state television. It includes no members of the party of the former president, Laurent Gbagbo, who had challenged Ouattara's victory and resisted international calls for him to step aside until he was finally forced out.

The absence of representatives of Gbagbo's party could undermine any reconciliation between the bitterly divided parties, some analysts said. But others said the break could prove to be an opportunity for Gbagbo's party to become a true opposition.

In the months after the November vote, violence between forces loyal to both sides left hundreds dead, and cases of enforced disappearances and sexual violence were reported. Human rights investigators said last month that they had found 10 mass graves near the commercial capital of Abidjan.

The former head of state and his wife were arrested in April and placed under house arrest in the north.

Ouattara had offered to form a unity government, but the offer was rejected by Gbagbo's party, which had demanded his release and that of other detained officials as conditions for their participation.

The new government is composed of 14 members from Ouattara's party and ministers from the coalition of parties that rallied around him during the election and the former rebellion from the north, which helped him oust his rival.

Ouattara was inaugurated on May 21 as president of Ivory Coast, where he faces the daunting task of reuniting a divided country, human rights groups have said.