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Côte d'Ivoire: hundreds of civilians killed in Duékoué

02-04-2011 News Release 11/82

Geneva / Abidjan (ICRC) – At least 800 people were killed in intercommunal violence in the Ivorian town of Duékoué on 29 March, according to information gathered by field delegates of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

"We are shocked by the brutality and scale of this act," said Dominique Liengme, head of the ICRC delegation in Côte d'Ivoire. "The ICRC condemns any and all direct attacks on the civilian population and reminds the parties to the conflict of their obligation to protect, in all circumstances, the population of the territory under their control."

ICRC delegates and volunteers from the Red Cross Society of Côte d'Ivoire went to the scene – the Carrefour neighbourhood in the western Ivorian town of Duékoué – on 31 March and 1 April to assess the needs of the local population and record eyewitness accounts of the event. They recovered 28 bodies and took them to the local morgue. This work should continue in the coming days.

Tens of thousands of men, women and children have been fleeing the fighting and pillaging that have been going on in Duékoué since last Monday. On several occasions, the various communities in the town and surrounding area have been severely affected by the fighting.

The ICRC and the Ivorian Red Cross are working hard across the country to provide civilians affected by the violence with food and other essential items and to facilitate access to drinking water and medical care.

For further information, please contact:

Kelnor Panglungtshang, ICRC Abidjan, tel. +225 09 399 404
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Dorothea Krimitsas, ICRC Geneva, tel. +41 79 251 93 18
To view the latest ICRC videos and download them in professional quality,please consult: www.icrcvideonewsroom.org

 See also:
Côte d'Ivoire: civilians trapped in escalating conflict