RealNews

Ivory Coast rejects 'death squad' claims

The Ivory Coast Government has denied that it is behind the killing of opposition sympathisers in loyalist held areas. Justice Minister Desire Tagro Assegnini was responding to a report by the United Nations human rights agency, alleging that “death squads” operating in the country are made up of elements close to the government and the presidential guard. Last weekend a popular comedian and opposition supporters were killed in government-controlled Abidjan, sparking riots by opposition supporters. On Thursday, the UN urged its non-essential staff to leave the country. Diplomatic sources say this means the evacuation of 30 of the 110 staff but emergency workers at the United Nations Refugee Agency will remain. A French-brokered peace deal appears to be on the verge of collapse. The three rebel groups are meeting to discuss their next steps, amid warnings of a return to outright warfare. Full Story

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