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Ivory Coast ‘Close to Civil War,’ French Ambassador Tells UN

March 25 (Bloomberg) -- The Ivory Coast is “close to civil war” as forces loyal to the country’s two rival presidents battle in the streets of the capital, Abidjan, France’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Gerard Araud, said today in New York.

The UN Security Council is meeting to consider a French resolution that would let UN peacekeepers use “all necessary measures” to protect civilians, according to diplomats who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Battles between supporters of incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo and the internationally recognized victor of the Nov. 28 election, Alassane Outtara, have caused “a collapse of law and order” in the capital, Araud said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Peter S. Green at the United Nations at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at

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