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Deaths reported in Ivory Coast protests

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Deaths reported in Ivory Coast protests

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Days of demonstrations in Ivory Coast have culminated in serious violence as the West African nation’s political crisis intensifies.

Reports say several people have been shot dead and dozens injured after opposition protesters clashed with security forces in Gagnoa. It is the latest sign of frustration over President Laurent Gbagbo’s decision to dissolve the government and electoral commission a week ago.

The move, which follows a spat over voter registration, looks certain to further delay a presidential poll that was scheduled for early March.

After years of delays, Gbagbo is under increasing international pressure to hold a ballot. It is widely seen as the only cure for a crisis sparked by Ivory Coast’s 2002-2003 civil war.