The leaders of a nationwide military mutiny in Ivory Coast have accepted a government proposal on bonus payments and agreed to return to barracks and end their revolt. Pascale Davies reports.
Peace is beginning to return to the streets of the Ivory Coast. Since Friday (May 12) violence has escalated. Renegade soldiers were shooting in the air and setting up road blocks. But now, in Bouake, the epicentre of the uprising and Ivory Coast's second largest city, the roads are reopening after leaders of the nation-wide military mutiny accepted a government proposal. Ministers quickly gave into the soldiers' demands, after an earlier proposal was rejected on Monday (May 15). Under the new agreement each of the mutineers will receive an immediate bonus payment of 5 million CFA francs - the equivalent of $8,400. Another 2 million CFA francs will then be paid at the end of next month. (SOUNDBITE) (French) MUTINEER SPOKESMAN, SERGEANT CISSEE, SAYING: "After what President Ouattara said yesterday we are satisfied, we have convinced our colleagues and go back to our barracks. We have opened the corridor (road) as you can see and we are with our colleagues from the police. We are going to our barracks. Our place is there not here." The mutineers were soldiers who helped President Alassane Ouattara seize power in 2011. Many were rewarded for their backing by being given jobs in the army. But they were angered by the scrapping of a deal agreed with the President in January to give them back pay and bonuses. For now the streets are steadily returning to normal. But the mutiny has raised fears of a resurgence of the violence seen during Ivory Coast's 10-year civil war.