Ivory Coast rivals get ready for battle in Abidjan

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Ivory Coast rivals get ready for battle in Abidjan

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Tensions remain high in Ivory Coast as fighters of the two presidential rivals prepare for battle across Abidjan.

Although the fighting yesterday was less than it had been following three days of pitch battles, both sides anticipate the resumption of hostilities at any time.

Troops loyal to Alassane Ouattara, who UN-certified results show won November’s presidential election are trying to force out incumbent Laurent Gbagbo.

The violence has brought the number of people killed to more than 1300 with aid agencies reporting a massacre in Duekoue.

France which has a troop presence in its former colony now controls the airport to aid a possible evacuation of its nationals although not everyone wants to leave.

One woman climbing into a truck with her baby said

she was unhappy at leaving as she had a life in Ivory Coast, family and friends.

But with the country’s state run television broadcasting anti-French slogans, Paris is considering evacuating all of its 12,000 citizens.

Some have already taken refuge at a French military camp near the airport.