Africa

About 60 dead after stadium stampede in Cote d'Ivoire

Alain Amontchi, Loucoumane Coulibaly

About 200 people were left injured and 60 dead after a crowd had gathered to watch New Year's Eve firework displays in Abidjan.

Stampede in Abijan leaves about 60 dead.(AFP)

About 60 people were crushed to death in Côte d'Ivoire's main city of Abidjan overnight after a New Year's Eve fireworks display, an emergency official and state radio said on Tuesday.

"There are around 60 dead, and about 200 injured, this is a provisional estimate," a rescue official told Reuters, asking not to be named.

He said the incident happened near Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium where a crowd had gathered to watch fireworks.

A Reuters correspondent said there were blood stains and abandoned shoes outside the stadium on Tuesday morning, and government officials and rescue and security forces were still there.

"My two children came here yesterday. I told them not to come but they didn't listen. They came when I was sleeping. What will I do?" said Assetou Toure, a cleaner.

She did not know if her children had escaped unhurt.

The incident was the worst of its kind in Abidjan since 2010, when a stampede at a stadium during a football match killed 18 people.

Côte d'Ivoire, once a stable economic hub for West Africa, is struggling to recover from a 2011 civil war in which more than 3 000 people were killed. – Reuters

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