Despite the ostensible cessation of the fighting that wracked Ivory Coast earlier this year, violence against civilians has continued in some rural regions, particularly in the southwest. In mid-September, for instance, up to 16 people were killed and 50 homes were burned in an attack on the town of Zriglo.
In this issue of Alert, we share news and images of our response to the ongoing crisis in Somalia, where MSF has spent the summer trying to expand its services to meet the latest emergency to befall the country’s people.
In November 2010, Ivory Coast held elections during which President Laurent Gbagbo was defeated at the polls. Gbagbo refused to accept the results, leading to months of fierce fighting between his supporters and the supporters of the election’s winner, Alassana Outarra.
MSF medical teams are treating survivors of ongoing violence in southwestern Ivory Coast, including those affected by last week’s attack on the town of Zriglo, where up to sixteen civilians were killed and 50 houses burned.
After hiding out in the forest for two weeks, this family from the Ivory Coast crossed the river that separates their troubled homeland from Liberia’s Nimba County, then paused before resuming a journey they hope leads to safety. Ivory Coast has been convulsed by months of post-election strife that has forced hundreds of thousands of people to seek sanctuary elsewhere.
"The fighters escorting the patients have now overrun the hospital. They are from the northern part of the country. They don't know us and they are better trained than the local militias, but they don't have any greater respect for us."
Paris/Brussels, March 31, 2011—New outbreaks of fighting in Ivory Coast are severely restricting already-limited civilian access to medical care, the international medical humanitarian organization Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) said today.
MSF Field Coordinator, Carole Coeur, in western Ivory Coast, did an interview on CNN International on Sunday, March 27, 2011. She discussed the situation in the western part of the country where intense fighting is taking place and health staff is fleeing.
The 'zone of confidence' (zone de confiance) in Ivory Coast does not live up to its name. Created as a buffer between warring parties, it has turned into one of the most unsafe parts of the country. On June 28, the team working for MSF in the zone saw this illustrated once again, when they received 12 wounded people in Bangolo Hospital. Eleven of these patients sustained serious injuries requiring referral to the MSF-supported hospital in Man, outside the contested area. Only two months before, five people had been killed and ten injured in a similar bout of fighting.
In addition to ongoing activities in the north and west of the country, MSF has donated medical and surgical equipment to hospitals in Abidjan to help treat people wounded during the past week's violence. An MSF cargo of eight additional tons of emergency relief materials, including medical and surgical items, arrived today in Ivory Coast.
Abidjan, November 5, 2004 - The international humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is extremely concerned about the impact on civilians of the government offensive launched yesterday (Nov 4) on the city of Bouake in the New Forces-controlled zone of the Ivory Coast.
Doctors Without Borders is approved by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501 (C) (3) tax-exempt organization, and all donations are tax deductible to the extent provided by law. Doctors Without Borders Federal Identification Number (EIN) is 13-3433452.