Civilians trapped in Côte d'Ivoire fighting

Civilians are trapped amid fighting that has been raging over the past several days in the Abobo district of Abidjan, home to 1.5 million people in Côte d'Ivoire.

refugees from Côte d'Ivoire

refugees from Côte d'Ivoire

The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) is concerned about the plight of the people there as clashes continue between forces loyal to Laurent Gbagbo and Alassane Ouattara.

UNHCR spokesperson Melisa Fleming says the agency has been told by church officials that about 60 families, mainly women and children, are trapped in a church where they are prevented from leaving.

“Our monitoring teams that have been present in the city have heard other reports of people being prevented from leaving the areas of  the fighting. Some families have been forced to hand over money or personal possessions in order to be allowed to leave. There are many reports of dead bodies, buses burned and shops looted, and young militiamen attacking people inside their homes.”

Laurent Gbagbo refuses to concede defeat to Alassane Outtara, the winner of last year’s presidential run-off election recognized by the United Nations.

duration:  23″

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