Ivory Coast Election: Winner…

Ivory Coast’s electoral commission is releasing provisional results from Sunday’s presidential vote.

Electoral commission spokesman Bamba Yacouba began with results from the north-central Vallee du Bandama region.

Yacouba explained how many voters were registered, how many voted, how many ballots were disqualified, and how many people voted for each of 14 candidates.

Yacouba announced results from four of Ivory Coast’s 19 regions. The vote so far is more or less split between the three leading candidates: President Laurent Gbagbo, former president Henri Konan Bedie, and former prime minister Alassane Ouattara.

Yacouba says he will announce more results throughout the night, including returns from the commercial capital Abidjan which has about one-third of the country’s voters.

If no one wins an outright majority of these ballots, there will be a second-round run off between the top two finishers.

The vote is meant to reunite the country eight years after the start of civil war. It was held in areas both under government control and in parts of the north that remain under the command of a former rebel movement.

International election observers say the balloting went well and turnout was high. But the European Union and the U.S.-based Carter Center say some of their observers were excluded from some of the vote counting. VOA

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