As efforts to forcibly remove Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo have been launched, Ibrahim Coulibaly, a spokesman for the Ivory Coast embassy in France has reasserted that no French forces were involved in the assault.
Gbabgo is still denying the result of the election, so today we decided to go and get him out of his bunker, Coulibaly told al-Jazeera English.
Asserting that there was no intention of harming Gbagbo, Coulibaly added, That's the only means now, we didn't have any choice. We have been trying to negotiate with him.
Meanwhile, Affoussy Bamba, spokeswoman for the government of the president elect, Alassane Dramane Ouattara, has also revealed to France-24 that Gbagbo will soon be captured.
At the current moment they have not yet captured Gbagbo but it will happen soon. They opened the gates and noted that the residence is surrounded by heavy weaponry. Now the objective is to capture him.
Forces loyal to Ouattara have reportedly been asked to take Gbago unharmed amid reports of them attacking Gbagbo's palace emerged.
This came after Gbagbo's European representative Toussaint Alain told AP that there was a real danger that Gbabgo, his wife and other family members could be killed in the assault on the presidential palace.
Claiming that French forces were firing from two Puma helicopters and also from the rooftop of the French ambassador's residence nearby, Alain stated, France will be held responsible for the death of President Gbagbo, his wife and family members and all those who are inside the residence, which is being bombarded by the French army.
French Military Spokesman Thierry Burkhard denied that French forces were firing at Gbagbo's residence.
However, the reports indication military intervention from France in Ivory Coast has raised several questions.
Euronews, which recalled French President Nicolas Sarkozy's statement justifying France's non-intervention in Tunisia, questioned the involvement in the Ivory Coast unrest.
A colonial power even several decades afterwards is always unjustified in pronouncing a judgment on the internal affairs of its former colony - and you know it, and everybody knows it, Sarkozy had said.
However, the French intervention is in tune with international law and backed by a UN mandate.
The following is the video pertaining to the Euronews report: