Sunday’s election in Ivory Coast will test whether the African country can turn the page after a decade of conflict and north-south division.
Burkina Faso’s president held last minute mediation talks with both candidates.
The incumbent Laurent Gbagbo is squaring off against his rival Alassane Ouattara from the rebel-controlled north.
Last month’s first round vote gave the president a six-point lead.
At least three people were reported killed in Abidjan yesterday when police opened fire on a crowd. The days in the run-up to the poll have seen clashes and rising tension.
The army’s chief of staff, General Philippe Mangou, has said a night-time curfew will be enforced over the next four days.
“If we don’t take protective measures, we risk getting to a state of general insurrection which may be the prelude to instability,” he said.
The opposition has said it will not observe the curfew, suspecting it to be a ploy to allow vote rigging.
The election has taken five years of difficult negotiations to bring about.
The UN is to send a further 500 peacekeeping troops for a month after the poll.