Rights abuses

FORCES loyal to Ivory Coast’s democratically- elected president killed hundreds of civilians, raped his rival’s supporters and burned villages during an offensive in the west of the country, a human rights group said.

Human Rights Watch called on Alassane Ouattara to investigate and prosecute abuses by his forces and those supporting his rival Laurent Gbagbo.

The group also said that forces loyal to Gbagbo killed more than 100 civilians to retaliate against pro-Ouattara fighters who launched a major offensive advancing toward Abidjan.

Gbagbo is holed up in a bunker in Abidjan, refusing to step aside although the UN ruled he lost the presidential election.

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