Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville peace talks suspended

Read more

ENCORE!

High-tech acting king Andy Serkis on Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Read more

REPORTERS

Hong Kong in rebellion against the 'motherland'

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dalia Grybauskaite, President of the Republic of Lithuania

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Gaza: children caught up in the conflict

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Was the UN chief’s speech in Tel Aviv really a 'shameful message'?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

France concerned about anti-Semitism

Read more

WEB NEWS

Online movement demands peace in Gaza

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Apple aims to satisfy China's hunger for smartphones

Read more

  • UN human rights chief blasts Israel-Gaza ‘war crimes’

    Read more

  • Gaza protests: ‘France imported the Mideast conflict a long time ago’

    Read more

  • Bomb attacks kill ‘scores’ in north Nigeria

    Read more

  • Poland’s Rafal Majka wins 17th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Remains of Flight MH17 victims arrive in the Netherlands

    Read more

  • Two Ukrainian fighter jets shot down over rebel-held territory

    Read more

  • TransAsia Airways Taiwan crash leaves dozens dead

    Read more

  • Video: Fear, death and mourning in Gaza’s Khan Younis

    Read more

  • Young riders raise French hopes for Tour de France

    Read more

  • Defying UK, France to proceed with warships sale to Russia

    Read more

  • Kerry arrives in Israel to push for Gaza ceasefire

    Read more

  • US courts issue conflicting reports on Obamacare

    Read more

  • Video: Lebanon fears fallout from regional turmoil

    Read more

  • Widodo wins Indonesian presidential election

    Read more

Africa

Several die in Ivory Coast army base raid

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-08-18

At least six people were killed when gunmen stormed an army base in a predawn raid on the outskirts of Abidjan on Monday. The incident follows a similar attack Sunday on a military checkpoint and police station in which five soldiers died.

AFP - A raid on an army base in Abidjan killed at least six soldiers and one of the assailants Monday, in the latest of a string of attacks targeting the military in Ivory Coast's economic capital.

President Alassane Ouattara has struggled to stabilise a country still awash with weapons and demobbed fighters, more than a year after the end of a deadly post-election crisis.

Gunmen stormed the Akouedo military base, which also houses a contingent of the United Nations peacekeeping force ONUCI, in Abidjan's Cocody neighbourhood before dawn, residents and officials said.

The camp was attacked from both sides but army reinforcements forced the attackers to flee, Defence Minister Paul Koffi Koffi said as he visited the site.

"We have lost six of our men and the attackers lost one of theirs," he said, flanked by the interior minister and the army chief of staff.

Four bodies could be seen strewn on the blood-splattered floor of a building at the entrance of the camp and two others at a sentry post and another gate, an AFP correspondent reported before the officials' visit.

All the victims were wearing military fatigues.

"Several armed men attacked the Akouedo camp, breaking in before heading for the powder magazine," an official in Ivory Coast's military command said without identifying the attackers.

"The men posted in the camp had to regroup before retaliating. The attackers fled towards Bingerville," a nearby town, he said.

ONUCI chief Bert Koenders said in a statement that the provisional casualty toll for the attack was seven dead and 10 seriously wounded.

A UN official speaking on condition of anonymity said the peacekeepers did not take part in the exchange of fire.

The attack on the Akouedo base came after gunmen killed four soldiers in twin attacks on a police station and an army post in Abidjan's Yopougon district in the early hours of Sunday.

Koffi had told AFP that Sunday's attack was an apparent bid to free people who had been arrested the previous day but did not rule out involvement from renegade soldiers.

"We'll see if the investigation leads us to members of the military, of the police or civilians," he said.

Tensions continue to spark violence in Ivory Coast despite the end of five months of fighting which followed the December 2010 polls, when then president Laurent Gbagbo refused to concede defeat at the ballot box to Ouattara.

Gbagbo is currently facing charges of crimes against humanity at the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

Ouattara's government has been trying to disarm and reintegrate fighters involved in both sides of the conflict into the Ivorian army to reduce the violence.

Ouattara promised "an unrelenting fight against those who aim to sow fear and a feeling of insecurity in the country", he said in a speech on the eve of the 52nd anniversary of independence from France.

He insisted that the insecurity is found only in "pockets" of the country and that a new authority would be formed soon to oversee the disarmament and reintegration of ex-fighters.

The defence ministry, in a statement, denounced apparently coordinated attempts at "sabotage when Ivorians are about to celebrate the 52nd anniversary of independence".

Security officials had also reported an exchange of fire near the border with Ghana on Sunday.

Following Monday's deadly attack, the Ivorian armed forces started patrolling Bingerville with heavily-armed vehicles and set up roadblocks.

The former French colony will celebrate its independence on Tuesday with celebrations led by Ouattara that will include the traditional military parade in Abidjan.
 

Date created : 2012-08-06

  • IVORY COAST

    Mob attack on refugee camp in Ivory Coast forces thousands to flee

    Read more

  • IVORY COAST

    Hollande urges Ivory Coast’s Ouattara to seek reconciliation

    Read more

COMMENT(S)