Ivory Coast winner outlines strategy to make rival relinquish control

The man whom most of the world recognises as Ivory Coast's president yesterday pressed ahead with plans to force his opponent to relinquish power, taking control of government buildings and the treasury.

Alassane Ouattara - whose victory has been acknowledged by the United Nations, America, France and the African Union - has called for a giant street demonstration to accompany his government as it installs a new station chief at state TV headquarters tomorrow. He intends to hold a second march the following day to take back the government buildings, where he plans to hold a cabinet meeting.

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Both buildings are heavily guarded by Laurent Gbagbo's security forces and any attempt to move in on them is likely to spark violence.

A financial strategy to destabilise Mr Gbagbo's increasingly isolated government is also being quietly pursued. Mr Ouattara wants to cut off Mr Gbagbo's access to state funds so he cannot pay civil servants and soldiers.

Such a move could set the stage for mass defections and turn the tide against Mr Gbagbo, breaking the deadlock between the two politicians.