The Russian Foreign Ministry made an urgent appeal on Tuesday to both sides involved in a civil war in the Ivory Coast to stop the bloodshed and attempt to settle the dispute through peaceful dialogue.
Forces loyal to the country’s UN-recognized leader, Alassane Ouatara, began a military offensive last week in an attempt to sweep former President Laurent Gbagbo from power.
Gbagbo refuses to leave office, even thought the Ivorian electoral commission declared him the loser of presidential elections in December.
“As a result of a sharp escalation of the armed conflict in Ivory Coast in the past few days, there have been numerous victims among civilians,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
“A striking case was the ethnic cleansing in Duekoue n the west of the country, which k…