International

Ivory Coast Fighting Forces More People To Flee

Ivorian displaced families sit at a UNHCR camp for displaced people west of Abidjan, on April 6, 2011. i i

hide captionIvorian displaced families sit at a UNHCR camp for displaced people west of Abidjan, on April 6, 2011.

ZOOM DOSSO/AFP/Getty Images
Ivorian displaced families sit at a UNHCR camp for displaced people west of Abidjan, on April 6, 2011.

Ivorian displaced families sit at a UNHCR camp for displaced people west of Abidjan, on April 6, 2011.

ZOOM DOSSO/AFP/Getty Images

Fighting continues in Ivory Coast; intransigent leader Laurent Gbagbo remains entrenched in his Abidjan home while he's besieged by fighters loyal to Alassane Ouattara, the internationally recognized president of the country. France's Defense Minister says UN troops are surrounding Gbagbo's compound 'in a limited area', according to the Telegraph.

Thousands of people are fleeing. International relief group, Oxfam, reports agents have received 4,000 refugees at the border in neighboring Liberia and believe thousands more are coming. Doctors Without Borders estimates a million people are on the run.

CatholicCulture.org reports Abijan Catholic Archibishop Jean-Pierre Kutwa has gone into hiding, while the Vatican's special envoy to Ivory Coast can't get into the country. There's no food, no water, no medical help and no safety. The Guardian cites information from a blogger who's talked with relatives in the Ivorian commercial capital:

It is important to add that it appears perpetrators of violence may consist of members of either of the two respective military forces, that is to say those of Mr Alassane Ouattara and also those of Mr Laurent Gbagbo. Furthermore, it seems there are also perpetrators of violence who do not appear to belong to either of the two military forces.

The Guardian links to this useful map (in French) letting Abidjan residents locate what little help is available.

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