Israeli diplomats evacuated from the Ivory Coast

The embassy, located in a neighborhood that was the scene of intense fighting, was hit by gunfire last week, but no one was injured.

April 10, 2011 03:39
1 minute read.
Soldier loyal to Gbagbo in Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast Soldier 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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The UN on Friday used armored vehicles to extricate four Israeli diplomats holed up in the embassy in an embattled area of Abidjan to one of the secure areas in the city, from where they were flown by helicopter to the airport, and then by plane to neighboring Ghana.

The embassy was hit by gunfire last week, but no one was injured.

Israel asks French to help secure Ivory Coast staff
Heavy fighting shakes Gbagbo grip on Ivory Coast

The embassy is located in an area of embassies and government offices that was the scene of intense fighting last week between forces loyal to the incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo, who refuses to give up power, and those of Alassane Ouattara, who beat Gbagbo in an election in November.

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman spoke last week to French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe and asked to allow the diplomats, including ambassador Daniel Sa’ada, and other Israelis in the city, to take shelter at a secure French base there.

Some 18 Israelis – making up seven families – are still believed to be in Abidjan.

The French embassy in Tel Aviv issued a statement Saturday welcoming the evacuation of the Israeli diplomats.

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