Leader vows to foil 'coup d'etat'


Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo refuses to cede power (AP)

Ivory Coast’s incumbent leader who refuses to cede power is describing international efforts to oust him a “coup d’etat”.

In an address broadcast on state television, Laurent Gbagbo said no one has the right to call on foreign armies to invade Ivory Coast.

“Our greatest duty to our country is to defend it from foreign attack,” he says.

The 15-nation West African regional bloc Ecowas has said it will consider a military intervention if Mr Gbagbo fails to step aside.

Ivory Coast was divided in two by a 2002-2003 civil war, and the long-delayed presidential election was intended to help reunify the nation.

However, tensions over the disputed outcome have sparked deadly violence.

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