Obama Lays Groundwork for Final Year in Office

President Barack Obama laid the groundwork Friday for his last year in office, vowing not to fade into the background but instead to "leave it all out on the field'' in 2016.

During a wide-ranging year-end news conference, Obama touted big wins for his administration, citing job growth, diplomacy with Iran and Cuba, the passage of significant climate and Asia-Pacific trade deals, a Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage and a congressional rewrite of the No Child Left Behind law.

He also noted that nearly 6 million people have been able to sign up for coverage under his health care law so far this year.

Thousands of Gbagbo's supporters fled the far west across the porous 700-kilometre (435-mile) border into neighbouring Liberia when he was captured in April 2011.

Observers say the pro-Gbagbo political elites, now mostly in Ghana or elsewhere in West Africa, are funding incursions into western Ivory Coast by Liberian mercenaries and Ivorians recruited in Liberia's refugee camps.

In the worst incident in June 2012, seven UN troops from Niger, 10 civilians and at least one Ivorian soldier were killed while patrolling villages south of the town of Tai.

"The two governments need to work harder than they are doing now if they really want to end this nonsense," a Liberian security source told AFP. READ MORE OF THIS STORY ON VOA NEWS

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