Amnesty International has called on the security forces in Côte d’Ivoire to protect civilians, as the number of people shot dead in violent incidents following the country's presidential elections rose to at least 20. Tensions have risen in Côte d’Ivoire since both presidential candidates in the 28 November election declared themselves the winners on Friday. Both the incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo and his rival Alassane Ouattara have sworn themselves in, prompting increased clashes between supporters of both parties and the security forces.
The call comes ahead of meeting of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in Nigeria on Tuesday to discuss the crisis.
"The international community, especially the Peace and Security Council of the African Union and ECOWAS must take steps to prevent further escalation of violence in Côte d’Ivoire," said Salvatore Saguès, Amnesty International's West Africa researcher.