ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast – The United Nations envoy to Ivory Coast is dismissing allegations that peacekeepers failed in their mandate to protect civilians during an attack on a camp for displaced people last week.
A mob stormed the camp in western town of Duekoue after perpetrators of an armed robbery the previous night reportedly fled there. The camp was destroyed and at least six people were killed. Residents accused the U.N. of failing to protect them, but U.N. officials said the primary responsibility for security at the camp rested with Ivorian security forces.
Albert Koenders said Friday that 22 U.N. security forces were inside and outside the camp when it was attacked, while no Ivorian security forces were present. But he said the U.N. forces "decided not to fire at a large group of people that were attacking the camp" in order to avoid "a massacre."