Monday, April 4, 2011

A Spanish in Abidjan: This is terrible. We feel real panic

The situation in Ivory Coast is getting even tougher at times and the Spanish living in Abidjan, the country's administrative capital, are entrenched in their homes for four days. "This is terrible. We feel real panic," said a Spanish resident of the city that prefers to remain anonymous. "The whole house rumbles by the shooting and explosions.

Two crystals have broken my house," he said. At his residence, are also four service people who do not feel safe in their homes. The five are sleeping in the kitchen as far away as they can from the windows, as they have been advised by the embassy. The food they were running out - "we are pulling cans that were stored" - and cut off running water a few hours ago, but he filled the bathtub last night that would not be without supply.

"It's much worse in the city center. A few acquaintances are left with a box of cookies." But worse than food shortages, is fear for the dozens of armed and drunken youths who are hunting for booty: "I have prepared several bags of money to give them if they try to enter my house because the looting are everywhere.

They have machine guns and, if not give them what they want, just kill you. " This man, who works for a company in Ivory Coast for 10 years, has seen the previous two crises, the 2003 and 2005, and then he remembers, "we evacuated the country for much less." "Nobody takes us out of here and is still horrible," he adds frightened, while calling for more aid to the Spanish legation.

Since the Foreign Ministry, recalls having a number of emergencies (the 07425789) in which Spanish will personally attend to any call from Ivory Coast. However, the Spanish lurking in your home, says the only advice I have received every time you contact the embassy "is kept hidden at home until the situation improves." On Friday, the government issued a statement reporting that the Spanish colony was well and in which he expressed concern about what is happening in Ivory Coast and especially in Abidjan.

Further explained that "have established mechanisms for regular monitoring of crisis" to "be able to meet any contingency that may arise to our citizens in this country." Other foreigners have begun to leave the country. This Sunday, 167 French and Lebanese have been in the last hours of Abidjan in the direction of Dakar, capital of Senegal.

"This is good news," he says with a distant voice in Spanish when ELMUNDO. it tells you the latest news. "Maybe the next be us," he concludes. The latest clashes in Ivory Coast began last November, after the holding of presidential elections after six postponements in six years [Special: Forgotten wars].

But these days the fighting between supporters of Alassane Ouattara, to which the international community recognizes as the winner of the elections, and those of Laurent Gbagbo, who is clinging to power, have killed at least 800 dead. As reported by news agencies deployed there since last Thursday, the fiercest skirmishes have been fought in Abidjan, where pro-Ouattara aircraft launched an attack trying to take control.

Ouattara's government has extended until Monday a curfew imposed since Thursday afternoon. On the other hand, the French troops (the former colonial power), in coordination with the UN, have taken control of Abidjan's international airport, according to the French Army General Staff, reported Efe.

France has also added 300 soldiers to be deployed in the Ivorian economic capital, where his troops are patrolling the neighborhoods where they live their expatriates. At present, there are 900 French soldiers deployed.

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