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Amnesty: Ivory Coast violence on upswing

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast, Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Tensions in Ivory Coast were on the rise Tuesday amid reports of an increasing number of arrests by government security forces, human rights activists reported.

Amnesty International said it had seen a growing number of reports of alleged violence and intimidation carried out by government forces and militia groups tied to President Laurent Gbagbo.

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"It is clear that more and more people are being illegally detained by security forces or armed militiamen and we fear that many of them may have been killed or have disappeared," Salvatore Sagues, Amnesty International's West Africa researcher, said in a written statement.

Gbagbo and his supporters have been pushing back in the aftermath of a disputed election in which his opponent, Alassane Ouattara, has been considered the winner by the United Nations and other African and Western nations.

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