The United Nations mission in Ivory Coast began evacuating some 200 employees after frequent attacks on its headquarters by forces loyal to the country's strongman.
A UN employee said they were told today that they were leaving. They were taken by helicopter from the UN base downtown to the airport. Another helicopter will take them to the northern city of Bouake.
The person asked not to be named because employees are not authorised to speak to the press. The evacuation order is for all "essential employees." Nonessential employees were already evacuated several months ago. The French military force in Ivory Coast secured the airport early yesterday.
Ban Ki-moon presses Ouattara over deaths
United Nations: UN chief Ban Ki-moon demanded that Ivory Coast's internationally recognized president Alassane Ouattara take action against followers who took part in a massacre of about 800 people, a UN spokesman said.Ouattara denied to Ban in a conversation yesterday that his followers were involved in events in the western town of Duekoue, according to spokesman Martin Nesirky.