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Five pro-Gbagbo soldiers killed after attacking UN peacekeepers in Cote d'Ivoire

04-02-2011 17:04 BJT

ABIDJAN, April 2 (Xinhua) -- At least five soldiers loyal to incumbent Laurent Gbagbo were killed after attacking the UN peacekeepers in Abidjan, the economic capital of Cote d'Ivoire, where the rival forces have been fighting in the past days.

A statement released on Friday by the UN peacekeeping mission in the West African country said the incident happened near the South African Embassy, where the head of the pro-Gbagbo Defense and Security Forces (FDS), general Philippe Mangou, took refuge on Wednesday.

A convoy of a Pakistani contingent of the United Nations Operation in Cote d'Ivoire (ONUCI) was passing by when it came under attack from the FDS.

The peacekeepers returned fire, killing five FDS soldiers.

In the same city, three Senegalese soldiers were reportedly injured in an attack by forces loyal to Gbagbo.

ONUCI has reported several attacks on its forces from Gbagbo's camp, which accuses the UN mission of colluding with Alassane Ouattara, the internationally recognized winner of the Nov. 28 presidential run-off.

Gbagbo, who also claims to have won the election, has demanded the departure of the UN and French forces from Cote d'Ivoire.

Cote d'Ivoire's political crisis witnessed a new twist on Monday when the pro-Ouattara Republican Forces (FRCI) launched a decisive offensive across the country.

On Thursday, the FRCI entered Abidjan to fight with the FDS around the residence of Gbagbo in the city's Cocody district and near the presidential palace in district of Plateau.

Between Friday night and Saturday morning, fresh clashes between the two groups erupted around the Akouedo camp, which is one of the most important military camps in the country.

 

Editor:Yang Jie |Source: Xinhua

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